Practical Applications of Immunology

7. Define specificity.
8. Define sensitivity.
9. Describe precipitation reactions and give specific examples.
10. Describe a western blot.

Diagnostic Immunology

Many tests based on the interactions of antibodies and antigens have been developed to determine the presence of antibodies or antigens in a patient.

These tests require both specificity and sensitivity of the antibodies. Sensitivity is the ability to recognize and bind to the antigen, specificity is the characteristic of binding only to one antigen and no others.

Monoclonal Antibodies

Hybridomas - produced by the fusion of malignant cells and plasma cells. The resulting population of cells is immortal and able to produce large amounts of a specific antibody.