All of us have heard that we need a strong immune system to fight off disease, especially with the COVID-19 virus around every corner. What does the immune system do?
Immune System General
The immune system is extremely complex and involves many molecules, systems, and reactions. Lately, the T cell has made it to some headlines about fighting coronavirus. T cells are part of the immune system that records every germ that it has destroyed. That record allows the body to react more quickly the next time that germ enters the body.
Our bone marrow generates white blood cells called lymphocytes. These lymphocytes travel to the thymus. The thymus is the genesis of the name T cells. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK27123/) has a lot more information about the thymus and T cells.
A cluster of differentiation 4 (CD4) helper T cells monitor our bodies for foreign invaders. The CD4 helper T cell might not recognize the invader face to face, but once the invading germ has entered a body cell, then telltale signs appear on the surface of that cell.
The invaded cell fights the invader and bits and pieces of that aggressor cell end up on the surface of that invaded cell. Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) Class II molecules (https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fimmu.2017.00292/full) pick up the debris field from the surface of the invaded cell. Signals are then generated by the MHC Class II molecules and passed onto other cells in the form of a viral peptide.
The viral peptide signals for the creation of CD4 helper T cells. The CD4 helper T cells direct the orchestra of immune response further. Immune system B cells are now activated by the CD4 helper T cells. The B cells produce immunoglobulin (Ig) G antibodies that are unique to the viral peptide on the invaded cell’s surface.
Over time, the B cells become mature memory B cells or plasma cells. The plasma cells make antibodies until the foreign invader is vanquished. The plasma cell retires to the bone marrow and hibernates until needed again. (https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/antibodies-fight-off-the-new-coronavirus-but-what-do-t-cells-do).
The mature memory B cells assume guard duty in the bloodstream and are now the first line of defense when that same virus, bacteria, or fungus enters the body again. The reaction speed of the immune system is now in warp drive to counter the next invasion.
Killer T Cells
The MHC Class II molecules recognize the antigens created by the B cells (Ig) G antibodies. The reaction to this recognition is to call for the assistance of cytotoxic T cells (CD8) T cells. They are also called CD8 killer T cells and sometimes killer T cells.
The invading foreign visitor infects the cell then converts the body’s cell to new programming. It replicates the invading host and prepares to conquer the body. Part of the mechanism that supports the hijacking of cell functions is the creation of MHC Class I molecules. These Class I molecules wiggle their way to the surface of the invaded cell.
Within the debris field on the surface of the invaded cell are peptides that are waving in the breeze so that passing cells can identify the distress signal from the invaded cell. CD8 killer T cells strap on their armor and go to battle attacking that invading molecule.
(https://medlineplus.gov/ency/anatomyvideos/000073.htm) shows an overview of this process.
It takes time for the immune system to respond from initial recognition to the signaling and further creation of T and B cells until the final battle is waged. With a strong immune system, this may take a couple of hours.
Once the battle is won, the CD8 killer T cells can become a memory CD8 T cell – another warrior waiting in the wings for first response to the next attack by a family member of that foreign invader.
I do a 72-hour-fast every month. Seventy-two hours appears to be the time needed for the body to recognize that we are at the crossroads of starving to death. Immediate action is taken to rid the body of all non-functioning and unnecessary cells/molecules. As such, the immune system is revamped, recharged, and ready to rock and roll – almost like new again.
Google ‘how to strengthen my immune system’ and you will find a wealth of information on food and lifestyle options that will improve the functioning of your immune system. Here is one of them (https://www.houstonmethodist.org/blog/articles/2020/mar/5-ways-to-boost-your-immune-system/).
We are responsible for our own health. Your doctor is an advisor or consultant. He or she can help you assess what might be wrong with you based on symptoms. Treating symptoms does not fix the cause of a problem, but it might make you feel better.
Things will improve, stay the same, or get worse in ten to fourteen days. If your symptoms do not change after a week, a visit or phone call to your doctor might be in order. If the symptoms are severe or life-threatening, then take immediate action.
Our immune system works but has many moving parts. Growing older slows down the signaling, responsiveness, and effectiveness of our bodies to respond to the latest coronavirus, seasonal influenza virus, or a visiting bacterium that you picked up along the way.
Life Longer & Enjoy Life! – Red O’Laughlin – RedOLaughlin.com