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ZingPath: Human Body Systems

Disorders of Immune System

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Human Body Systems

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Lesson Focus

Disorders of Immune System


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You will discover the major systems that allow the human body to function properly, and learn the important roles that each of these systems play. Some diseases and limitations of the human body are also discussed.

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Now You Know

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:

  • Describe autoimmune disease.
  • Give examples of several autoimmune diseases.
  • Describe the HIV virus.
  • Describe allergic reactions.

Everything You'll Have Covered

How do autoimmune diseases affect the body?

~ Autoimmune diseases cause the immune system to become unable to distinguish between foreign invaders and the body's own cells. If the immune system attacks the body's own cells, cellular damage and damage to tissues or organs may occur.

What are some examples of autoimmune diseases?

~ Some examples of autoimmune diseases include rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, lupus, and Graves' disease.

How does the body respond when exposed to allergy-causing antigens, and what symptoms result?

~ When a person comes in contact with an allergy-causing antigen, the antigens stick to antibodies on the surface of some of the body's white blood cells called mast cells. This causes the mast cells to release histamine into the bloodstream. Histamine interacts with tissues in the body to produce redness, swelling, and noticeably increased mucus production.

How does HIV/AIDS compromise a person's immune system?

~ When a person becomes infected with the HIV virus, the virus quickly begins to reproduce and, in the process, destroys the immune system's CD4 T-cells. This eventually causes the immune system to collapse, leaving the body unprotected against other forms of disease.

Tutorial Details

Approximate Time 2 Minutes
Pre-requisite Concepts Students should be familiar with the terms: biology, body system, and AIDS.
Course Biology
Type of Tutorial Animation
Key Vocabulary biology, body system, AIDS