The Immune System - key concepts and questions
University of Oxford, UK
Immunology is of fundamental importance in understanding the mechanisms that underpin human physiology and human disease. Moreover, it reflects fundamental concepts in cell biology and how these play out in vivo in all multicellular organisms. The immune system has evolved in response to pathogenic microorganisms - bacteria, viruses, protozoans, helminth... read moreworms and fungi, and these pathogens are constantly evolving in order to evade immune surveillance.
The study of immunology has generated some of the most sophisticated (and successful) medicines ever developed; vaccines, transplanted organs and therapeutic antibodies. Equally importantly, the study of immunology has also led directly to the invention of powerful new technologies to answer specific research questions. Where would we be today without monoclonal antibodies, flow cytometry, ELISA, or pregnancy tests?
The aim of this series is to support students in their learning of immunology and introduce key concepts and big questions.