The necessity for an interactive theory of immunity


It was known for a long time that certain immune reactions, particularly some that manifested themselves as skin swellings, were elicited by cells rather than soluble antibodies. For example, classical experiments of Chase in 1945 had shown that immunity of guinea pigs to tubercle bacilli, as tested by a skin reaction to tuberculin, was transferable to non-immune animals by lymph node cells but not by serum of immune animals1. This type of immunity had been termed “cellular immunity”, not knowing what it really was, to distinguish it from antibody-mediated “humoral immunity”. In his first paper on the transfer of transplantation immunity by lymph node cells in 1953 Mitchison commented “transplantation immunity shares with ... immunity to tuberculin the property of being transferred with greater facility by cells than by serum”2. In the absence of a paradigm that included immune mechanisms without antibodies, these observations were not followed by any sort of interpretation.


Transplant Rejection Interactive Theory Foreign Antigen Mixed Lymphocyte Reaction Associative Recognition 


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Further reading

  1. Good RA, Finstad J (1968) The development and involution of the lymphoid system and immunologic capacity. Trans Am Clin Climatol Assoc 79: 69–107PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Cohn M (1970) Selection under a somatic model. Cell Immunol 1: 461–467PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  5. Herzenberg LA, Chan EL, Ravitch MM, Riblet RJ, Herzenberg LA. (1973) Active suppression of immunoglobulin allotype synthesis. 3. Identification of T cells as responsible for suppression by cells from spleen, thymus, lymph node, and bone marrow. J Exp Med 137: 1311–1324PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Gershon RK, Mokyr MB, Mitchell MS (1974). Activation of suppressor T cells by tumour cells and specific antibody. Nature 250: 594–596PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Kirkwood JM, Gershon RK (1974) A role for suppressor T cells in immunological enhancement of tumor growth. Prog Exp Tumor Res 19: 157–164PubMedGoogle Scholar

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