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Immune system


Introduction


This comprises the spleen, the thymus gland in the neck and many lymph nodes and connecting structures. These are backed up by the bone-marrow whichproduces many of the defensive cells of the body. The spleen destroys old red blood cells; the thymus gland is a centre for activationof lymphocytes, which are critical defensive cells of the body.This elegant system works by the coordinated action of lymphocytes that are primed to recognise infective invaders of the body such as bacteria and viruses. Lymphocytes work together with antibodies, proteins that attach to and destroy invaders. It is side-effects of the activities of these defensive systems thatmake people feel ill during an infection with sweats, temperatures and muscle pains etc. The enlarged glands so common in illness are enlarged in order to generate large quantities of lymphocytes.


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