Bertybassett
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Hi, I don't really understand what actually happens in the secondary immune response. So when the antigen re enters to body, I get that memory cells quickly recognise the antigen. But then is the response essentially the same as the primary i.e. do the memory t helper cells bind to the antigen, activates clonal selection of b cells more quickly etc ? How is the action different? Many thanks
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Jpw1097
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(Original post by Bertybassett)
Hi, I don't really understand what actually happens in the secondary immune response. So when the antigen re enters to body, I get that memory cells quickly recognise the antigen. But then is the response essentially the same as the primary i.e. do the memory t helper cells bind to the antigen, activates clonal selection of b cells more quickly etc ? How is the action different? Many thanks
Yes, you’re right. So you have lots of circulating memory cells (memory B cells, memory T cells) and so the recognition of an antigen is going to happen much faster. A memory T cell will recognise an antigen presented on the surface of an antigen presenting cell, and the process is essentially the same. The memory T cell proliferates and differentiates into more memory T cells and effector helper T cells. These helper T cells then release cytokines and activate memory B cells, which proliferate and differentiate into plasma cells and more memory B cells. These B cells have already undergone class switching (producing IgG instead of IgM) and affinity maturation, so the antibodies bind much more strongly to the antigen. Since there are lots of memory B cells (which differentiate into plasma cells), more antibodies will be produced more quickly. Therefore the secondary immune response is faster for these reasons.
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