Natural Id-Anti-Id Networks and the Immunological Homunculus
It is postulated by Jerne and his associates that a network of mutually interacting idiotypes (ids) and anti-idiotypes (anti-ids) is a major factor in regulating the immune response . Analogous to the nervous system wherein an environmental stimulus becomes information as a result of setting into motion self-connected neural networks, the environmental stimulus of the immune system, the antigen, acquires meaning by impinging on self-recognizing id-anti-id networks. Although the id-anti-id hypothesis does not explain or necessitate other demonstrably important immune system factors such as MHC molecules or helper T cells, the notion has fruitfully roused the neural networks of many immunologists.
KeywordsArthritis Hepatitis Tuberculosis Flare Macromolecule
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