sweetescobar
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Hi everyone. I was wandering about something. When a pathogen enters into the body, and the antigens on it stimulate an immune response, and the lymph nodes release lymphocytes which divide, before producing antibodies to counteract the pathogen and destroy it, does some of the lymphocytes that have divided remain in the lymph nodes as memory cells?
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Kallisto
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(Original post by sweetescobar)
Hi everyone. I was wandering about something. When a pathogen enters into the body, and the antigens on it stimulate an immune response, and the lymph nodes release lymphocytes which divide, before producing antibodies to counteract the pathogen and destroy it, does some of the lymphocytes that have divided remain in the lymph nodes as memory cells?
Memory cells exist for their own. They are an own type of cells. Lymphocytes on the other hand are just a part of B, T and killer cells: their function is to identify pathogens and to let them destroy. If that was done, memory cells save the information about the pathogens for the next years, if they already didn't.
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macpatgh-Sheldon
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Memory cells are actually specific sub-populations of T lymphocytes and B lymphocytes, called T memory cells and B memory cells, respectively. These cells may have a greater affinity for the specific antigen in question than naive B and T lymphocytes [non-memory ones].

The majority of T and B lymphocytes are culled after the immune response by a "suicide" process of apoptosis; those that remain form memory cells. The persistence of these cells via their strength to survive culling is partly afforded to them by IL-15 [IL = interleukin, a type of cytokine].

Memory T and B cells require periodic stimulation by specific antigen, hence the time limit of effectiveness of vaccines.

M
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