The research has been published in the Science Immunology Journal. “The best immune defence happens at the gate, guarding against viruses trying to enter,” said Iwasaki, senior author of the study.
Mucous membranes contain their own immune defence system that combat air-or foodborne pathogens.
When challenged, these barrier tissues produce B cells which in turn secrete immunoglobin A (IgA) antibodies. Unlike vaccines which elicit a system-wide immune response, IgA antibodies work locally on mucosal surfaces found in the nose, stomach, and lungs.
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