What happens when you have an allergy ap biology

Various chemicals inducing/inhibiting described T cell signalling pathways can be used to study the anergy. The anergy in T cells can be induced by Ionomycin, the ionophore capable of raising intracellular concentration of calcium ions artificially.

Conversely, Ca+II chelators such as EGTA can sequester Calcium ions making them unable to cause the anergy. Blocking of the pathway leading to the anergy can be also done by cyclosporin A, which is capable of inhibiting calcineurin — the phosphatase responsible for dephosphorylating of NFAT priming its activation.

PMA, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, along with ionomycin is used to induce full T cells activation by mimicking signals provided naturally by TCR/costimulatory receptors activation.[3]

Dominant tolerance

Dominant and recessive tolerance are forms of a peripheral tolerance (the other tolerance beside peripheral is a central tolerance). Where so called recessive tolerance is associated with anergized lymphocytes as described above, in the dominant form of tolerance, specialized T-reg cells which actively ablate the immune response are developed from the naive T lymphocyte.

What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

Similarly to recessive tolerance, unopposed NFAT signalling is also significant for T-reg induction. In this case, the NFAT pathway activates another transcription factor — FOXP3[8] that is a marker of T-regs and participates in their genetic program.[4][9]


This phenomenon was first described in B lymphocytes by Gustav Nossal and termed «clonal anergy.» The clones of B lymphocytes in this case can still be found alive in the circulation, but are ineffective at mounting immune responses. Later Ronald Schwartz and Marc Jenkins described a similar process operating in the T lymphocyte.

Numerous viruses (HIV being the most extreme example) seem to exploit the immune system’s use of tolerance induction to evade the immune system, though the suppression of specific antigens is done by fewer pathogens (notably Mycobacterium leprae).[2]

At the cellular level, «anergy» is the inability of an immune cell to mount a finish response against its target. In the immune system, circulating cells called lymphocytes form a primary army that defends the body against pathogenic viruses, bacteria and parasites.

What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

There are two major kinds of lymphocytes — the T lymphocyte and the B lymphocyte. Among the millions of lymphocytes in the human body, only a few actually are specific for any specific infectious agent. At the time of infection, these few cells must be recruited and allowed to multiply rapidly.

What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

This process – called «clonal expansion» – allows the body to quickly mobilise an army of clones, as and when required. Such immune response is anticipatory and its specificity is assured by pre-existing clones of lymphocytes, which expand in response to specific antigen (process called «clonal selection»).

What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

This specific clonal army then combats the pathogen until the body is free of the infection. Following clearance of the infection, the clones that are no longer needed die away naturally.

However, a little number of the body’s army of lymphocytes are capable to react with proteins that are normally present in a healthy body. The clonal expansion of those cells can lead to autoimmune diseases, wherein the body attacks itself.

What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

In order to prevent this process, lymphocytes possess an intrinsic quality-control mechanism. This machinery shuts below the lymphocytes’ ability to expand, if the trigger for the expansion turns out to be the body’s own protein. T-cell anergy can arise when the T-cell does not get appropriate co-stimulation in the presence of specific antigen recognition.[2] B-cell anergy can be induced by exposure to soluble circulating antigen, and is often marked by a downregulation of surface IgM expression and partial blockade of intracellularsignaling pathways.[2]

Further information on poison ivy.

See Case studies in immunology — a clinical companion by Fred S.

Rosen and Raif S. Geha, Garland Publishing Inc., 1996 (Case 6, contact hypersensitivity). Further information on allergy and hypersensitivity, and the underlying mechanisms, can be found in any textbook of immunology. For a discussion of corticosteroids, see a physiology book, such as the current edition of the Review of Medical Physiology by William F. Ganong, Appleton and Lange.

Godfrey, H. P., H. Baer, and R. C. Watkins. 1971. Delayed hypersensitivity to catechols.

What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

V. Absorption and distribution of substances related to poison ivy extracts and their relation to the induction of sensitization and tolerance. J.

What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

Immunol. 106(1):91-102.

Here are some relevant web sites:

  1. Poison Ivy and Poison Oak Products at Wayne State U. There’s a excellent list of links here!
  2. An excellent photo of the red-leafed stage is provided at the Cornell University Poisonous Plants Sheet.
  3. Camper with a rash by Lewis Nelson, M.D., Yale University School of Medicine. Clinical case study with list of plant species and discussion of alternative treatments.
  4. Contact dermatitis home sheet by A. P. Truett, III, M.D. at Vanderbilt University.

    What happens when you own an allergy ap biology

    4-tertiary-butylcatechol is an industrial chemical which causes contact dermatitis for some workers exposed to it.

  5. There is a excellent common-sense discussion of the medical side of poison ivy at the Famil-e-docs physicians’ website.
  6. Poison ivy, sumac, and oak by the American Academy of Dermatology. Includes what to do and common myths.
  7. An excellent series of photos in diverse seasons is at the Poison Ivy, Western Poison Oak, Poison Sumac site by Gerald A. Mulligan of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.
  8. Excellent photo at the PLANTS TOXIC TO ANIMALS site of the U Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

  9. Poisonous Plant Database by D. Jesse Wagstaff, DVM (US Food and Drug istration). An extensive bibliography.

This sheet is maintained by Eric Martz.

I would love to add more graphics to this sheet. If you own some to contribute, please contact me.
Final updated March 31, 1997.

«Anergy» redirects here. For the use of the term in thermodynamics, see Exergy.

Anergy is a term in immunobiology that describes a lack of reaction by the body’s defense mechanisms to foreign substances, and consists of a direct induction of peripheral lymphocytetolerance.

An individual in a state of anergy often indicates that the immune system is unable to mount a normal immune response against a specific antigen, generally a self-antigen. Lymphocytes are said to be anergic when they fail to reply to their specific antigen. Anergy is one of three processes that induce tolerance, modifying the immune system to prevent self-destruction (the others being clonal deletion and immunoregulation).[1]


The «Multitest Mérieux» or «CMI Multitest» system (Multitest IMC, Istituto Merieux Italia, Rome, Italy) has been used as a general test of the level of cellular immunity. It is an intradermal test of skin reactivity (similar to tuberculin tests) in which a control (glycerol) is used with seven antigens of bacterial or fungal origin (tetanus toxoid, tuberculin, diphtheria, streptococcus, candida, trichophyton, and proteus).

In this test reactions are categorized according to the number of antigens provoking a response and the summed extent of the skin response to every seven antigens. Here anergy is defined as a region of skin reactivity of 0–1 mm, hypoergy as a reaction of 2–9 mm in response to fewer than three antigens, normergic as a reaction of 10–39 mm or to three or more antigens, and hyperergy for a reaction of 40 mm or more.[10][11][12]

Clinical significance

Anergy may be taken advantage of for therapeutic uses.

The immune response to grafting of transplanted organs and tissues could be minimized without weakening the entire immune system— a side effect of immunosuppressive drugs love cyclosporine. Anergy may also be used to induce activated lymphocytes to become unresponsive with autoimmune diseases love diabetes mellitus, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.[1] Likewise, preventing anergy in response to a tumoral growth may assist in anti-tumor responses.[6] It might also be used for immunotherapeutic treatment of allergies.[7]

Molecular mechanism of anergy induction in T lymphocytes

Stimulation of the T cell receptor (TCR) along with costimulatory receptors of a T lymphocyte triggers balanced activation of every the T-cell’s signalling pathways (full T-cell stimulation).

In this case, beside other pathways, calcium dependent arm of a lymphocyte signalling is activated by TCR. This leads to an elevation of intracellular Ca+II concentration. Under this condition, calcium dependent phosphatase calcineurin removes phosphates from a transcriptional factorNFAT, which in turn translocates to the nucleus.

Additionally, during full T-cell stimulation a costimulatory receptor CD28 activates PI3K or other pathways that eventually lead to increased nuclear levels of rel, NF-κB and AP-1 (transcription factors) much more than just by the TCR activation alone.[3]AP-1, fos/jun heterodimer, further heterodimerizes with NFAT forming a transcriptional complicated which promotes transcription of T-cell productive response associated genes.[4] Those are for example IL-2 and its receptor.[4]

On the contrary, TCR signalling without costimulatory receptors sufficiently activates only the calcium arm of the signalling leading only to the activation of NFAT.

However without the necessary induction of AP-1 by other pathways, activated NFAT is unable to form the transcriptional complicated with AP-1, as it does during finish T-cell activation (productive response). In this case NFAT homodimerizes (complexes with itself), working as a transcriptional factor that induces anergy in the lymphocyte instead.[5]

NFAT homodimers are directly responsible for the expression of anergy associated genes such as ubiquitin ligase GRAIL or a protease caspase 3.[5] Moreover, the expression levels of IL-2, but also for example TNFα and IFNγ, typical for productive response, are actively decreased in the anergized cell.[3] Anergized cells tend to produce antiinflammatory IL-10 instead.[4] There are 3 NFAT proteins in the T-cell, NFAT1, NFAT2 and NFAT4 and apparently are redundant to some extent.[5]

Thus when an antigen is properly presented to the T lymphocytes by an antigen presenting cell (APC), which displays the antigen on its MHC II complicated and which activates T cell´s costimulatory receptors, T lymphocytes undergo productive response.

However, when T cells interacts with an antigen not presented by the APCs, that is extremely probably not the antigen that an immune response should be held against, the T cell undergoes anergy. It has also been shown that certain antigens properly presented by the APCs induce the T cell activation only weakly. This feeble stimuli still activates NFAT sufficiently, however AP-1 is not, thereby the anergistic response takes put even with the costimulation.[5] Strong stimulation of T-cells either by IL-2 or by TCR/costimulatory receptors can break the anergy.[3][4]