HSCI-209 Immunology
Fall for 2017-2018
The field of immunology studies how the body distinguishes between what is self and what is non-self. Although we are accustomed to thinking about immunology with respect to pathogens and disease, the function of the immune system in fighting microbes is really a manifestation of its fundamental role as a system whereby the body knows itself. Throughout our lives, the immune system gathers and interprets information about the body. When something is not right, whether it is due to a microbial pathogen, or traumatic tissue damage, or cells growing abnormally to become a tumor, or the presence of transplanted foreign tissue, our immune system is activated to try to restore homeostasis. When it malfunctions it contributes to disease. In this course, we will learn the basic principles governing the functioning of the human immune system. The first few lectures will refer to the immune response to microbial infections. Defense against infection was the first function of the immune system to be recognized and is the best understood. Infection makes a story that has a beginning, middle, and end, and you should be able to tell that story about half way through the course. Once we learn how the cells and molecules work together to fight infection, we will then be able to consider them with regard to allergens, venoms, blood transfusions, tissue transplants, autoimmune diseases, cancer, immunodeficiency and vaccinations. Open to Human Science Majors or others with permission of the instructor. Fall, Senior Year.
Credits: 3
Prerequisites: HSCI-101, 102, 201, 202; CHEM-001, 002.
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