Defending Against Invaders

In a normal immune system, invading bacteria and viruses trigger antibodies, which are “programmed” to remember and defend against the germs in the future. During an allergic reaction, however, the immune system treats generally harmless allergens, such as pollen, mold, animal dander or dust mites, as pathogens and begins producing large amounts of Immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies.

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