The function of the antibody called immunoglobulin D has puzzled immunologists for years. A study in Nature Immunology reports that immunoglobulin D helps combat upper respiratory infections.
Andrea Cerutti and colleagues show antibody-producing cells located in tonsils and upper airway tissues release immunoglobulin D (IgD). IgD then recognizes bacteria and other disease-causing microbes. IgD-bound bacteria trigger immune cells known as basophils to release fever-inducing agents and a variety of antimicrobial substances to rid the infectious agent.
This work therefore places IgD antibodies as a foot soldier in the immune arsenal against respiratory infections.
Andrea Cerutti (Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, NY, USA)
Abstract available online.
(C) Nature Immunology press release.
Message posted by: Trevor M. D'Souza