A protein produced by plasma cells and lymphocytes and characteristic of these types of cells. Immunoglobulins play an essential role in the body’s immune system. They attach to foreign substances, such as bacteria, and assist in destroying them. Immunoglobulin is abbreviated Ig. The classes of immunoglobulins are termed immunoglobulin A (IgA), immunoglobulin G (IgG), immunoglobulin M (IgM), immunoglobulin D (IgD) and immunoglobulin E (IgE).
- Immunoglobulin A
A major class of immunoglobulins (antibodies) found in serum and external body secretions such as saliva, tears, and sweat, as well as in the gastrointestinal, respiratory, and genitourinary tracts. Abbreviated IgA. About 10 percent to 15 percent of the antibodies present in the body are IgA antibodies.
- Immunoglobulin D
A class of immunoglobulins found in small amounts in the body, whose exact function is not clear.
- Immunoglobulin E
A class of immunoglobulins that includes the antibodies that are important in an allergic response. Abbreviated IgE. A person who has an allergy often has elevated blood levels of IgE. IgE antibodies attack and engage the invading army of allergens.
- Immunoglobulin G
A class of immunoglobulins found in all body fluids. They are the smallest but most common antibodies (75 percent to 80 percent) in the body. Abbreviated IgG. IgG antibodies are very important in fighting bacterial and viral infections. IgG antibodies are the only type of antibody that can cross the placenta in a pregnant woman […]
- Immunoglobulin M
A class of immunoglobulins found in blood and lymph fluid that are the first type of antibody made in response to an infection. Abbreviated IgM. IgM antibodies make up about 5 percent to 10 percent of all the antibodies in the body.