Quiz: Do You Know Your Immune System?

This post is part of a miniseries on the immune system. Be sure to check out the other posts in this series that you may have missed.
Cartoon microbes with smiley faces forming the shape of a question mark.
Credit: NIGMS.

Throughout our immunology miniseries, we introduced the immune system and its many functions and components. Additionally, we highlighted how vaccines train your immune system, how the system can go awry, and how NIGMS-supported researchers are studying immunology and infectious diseases. Put your knowledge about the immune system to the test by taking the quiz below.

#1. Which component is a part of the innate immune system?

The correct answer is C. Lysozyme is an enzyme found in saliva and tears that can kill pathogens by attacking their outer membranes. Antibodies, T-cells, and B-cells are all part of the adaptive immune system.

#2. White blood cells undergo training to differentiate “self” from “non-self.” If this training fails, what type of condition may occur?

The correct answer is A. White blood cells that target “self” attack the body’s own tissues. For example, in type 1 diabetes, the immune system wrongly attacks the pancreas, the organ responsible for making insulin.

#3. True or false: The adaptive immune system is responsible for generating long-lasting immunity through vaccination.

The correct answer is A. The adaptive immune system gets its name from its ability to remember the pathogens it encounters. This phenomenon, called immunological memory, is a key part of how vaccines work.

#4. Which of these terms can be defined as the inability of the immune system to effectively mount a response to a pathogen?

The correct answer is D. Immunodeficiency disorders are a category of diseases, either genetic or caused by external factors, that make people highly susceptible to infection.

#5. Every year, about 1.7 million adults in the United States develop sepsis, an extreme immune response to certain insults. Which of the following is a common cause of sepsis?

The correct answer is B. Bacterial, viral, and fungal infections are all common insults that cause sepsis.


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