The Function of Allergy: Immunological Defense Against Toxins

@article{Profet1991TheFO,
  title={The Function of Allergy: Immunological Defense Against Toxins},
  author={Margie Profet},
  journal={The Quarterly Review of Biology},
  year={1991},
  volume={66},
  pages={23 - 62}
}
  • M. Profet
  • Published 1991
  • Biology, Medicine
  • The Quarterly Review of Biology
This paper proposes that the mammalian immune response known as "allergy" evolved as a last line of defense against the extensive array of toxic substances that exist in the environment in the form of secondary plant compounds and venoms. Whereas nonimmunological defenses typically can target only classes of toxins, the immune system is uniquely capable of the fine-tuning required to target selectively the specific molecular configurations of individual toxins. Toxic substances are commonly… Expand
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