n. pl. an·ti·bod·ies
Any of numerous Y-shaped glycoproteins that bind to specific antigens and either neutralize them or cause them to be destroyed by other elements of the immune system, such as phagocytes, cytotoxic cells, or complement proteins. Antibodies occur as antigen receptors on the surface of B cells and are secreted as soluble proteins when the B cells mature into plasma cells. Antibodies are also called "immunoglobulins."
[Translation of German Antikörper : anti-, antagonistic (from Latin anti-, anti-) + Körper, body.]
(click for a larger image)antibody
When bacteria enter a flesh wound, a B cell releases antibodies, which attach to the bacteria and direct them toward a macrophage for destruction.
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