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Doctor insights on: How Does The Immune System Fight Malaria

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How does the immune system fight malaria?

How does the immune system fight malaria?

Two stages: Natural Killer cells are the first immune step that seeks out the malaria to mark it for the body to "kill" it. A second step is the T cell that also seeks the genetic marker of the malaria to flag it for a "kill". Since malaria invades natural cells of the body it can begin to hide from the immune system and replicate. Consider vaccination if traveling in high risk areas with malaria. ...Read more

Dr. Heidi Fowler
355 doctors shared insights

Malaria (Definition)

The word comes from italian "mala aria" (bad air), from the belief the disease was caused by unhealthy air in swampy districts. Spread by mosquitoes, the parasite enter the bloodstream & infect red blood cells causing high fever, shaking chills, sweats, vomiting, muscle pain, headache, anemia. First symptoms occur 10 days to 4 weeks post infection, symptoms occur in cycles of ...Read more


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Why is it that carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Why is it that carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Can be infected: Having Sickle Cell traits doesn't actually mean that a person can't become infected w/ Malaria. But, it certainly helps with resistance. In a person who has sickle-cell trait – the red blood cells are destroyed prematurely before the Plamodium can reproduce. According to one study “Sickle cell trait provides 60% protection against overall mortality. Most of this protection occurs between 2-16..." ...Read more

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Can you please tell me why it'sthat only carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Can you please tell me why it'sthat only carriers of sickle cell anemia are immune to malaria?

Sickle Cell /Malaria: In a person who has sickle-cell trait – the red blood cells are destroyed prematurely before the Plamodium can reproduce. According to one study “Sickle cell trait provides 60% protection against overall mortality. Most of this protection occurs between 2-16 months of life, before the onset of clinical immunity in areas with intense transmission of malaria.” ...Read more

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How does the immune system fight off germs?

How does the immune system fight off germs?

Heard to simplify.: Like a complicated orchestra plays a difficult score. Different germs produce different responses. There are is nonspecific and specific immune responses. Even the skin oils, saliva, stomach acid tears and sweat are important here. It is much to difficult to quickly answer which is why i taught a course taking 20 hours on the subject to medical students. ...Read more

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Why does the immune system fight & heal physical illnesses but most likely not or never mental illnesses?

Why does the immune system fight & heal physical illnesses but most likely not or never mental illnesses?

Mental illness: This is a very good question and the answer has eluded the medical profession for a long time. Not all mental illness is based on a immune imbalance though and some is related to hormonal imbalances. The workings of the brain are still pretty mysterious. Stay tuned. ...Read more

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How does the immune system fight cancer?

How does the immune system fight cancer?

Complicated: Natural killer cells can recognize tumor cells and virally infected cells and destroy those. T-cells and antibodies to markers on tumor cells may also destroy tumor cells. Unfortunately, most of the time, some cancer cells evade this destruction and continue the disease process. The hope and potential of immune therapy remains to be realized. ...Read more

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How can the immune system fight off infection?

Immune system: It is a multi-pronged attack too big to describe here.....So follow this link. http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/immunesystem/pages/default.aspx. ...Read more