Potter, Kathleen N. Department of Microbiology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas.
Capra, J. Donald Department of Microbiology, Southwestern Medical School, University of Texas, Dallas, Texas.
Last reviewed:January 2017
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- Classes of immunoglobulins
- IgD and IgE
- Links to Primary Literature
- Additional Readings
Any of the glycoproteins in the blood serum that are induced in response to invasion by foreign antigens and that protect the host by eradicating pathogens. Antibodies belong to the immunoglobulin (Ig) group of proteins. Structurally, immunoglobulins are composed of two identical heavy (H) and two identical light (L) polypeptide chains (see illustration). Each H and L chain has an amino-terminal variable (V) region and a carboxyl-terminal constant (C) region. Although V regions from different antibodies exhibit considerable sequence variation, there is a large degree of sequence similarity among C regions of different antibodies. See also: Antibody; Blood; Glycoprotein; Immunoglobulin genes; Protein
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