Some lymphocytes retain a memory of invading microorganisms so that the invaders can be dealt with more rapidly when next encountered. It is this memory function that is stimulated by vaccines. Lymphocytes protect against the development of tumors and cause rejection of tissue in organ transplants.
Lymphocytes come in several varieties, the most common of which are B-lymphocytes, which make antibodies that attack bacteria and toxins, and T-lymphocytes, primarily responsible for cell-mediated immunity (i.e., attacking body cells themselves when they have been taken over by viruses or become cancerous).
Related category• CELL BIOLOGY
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