The Winter Flu

Effects/Symptoms of the Flu

Last year in the middle of the winter I got the flu. I had gotten it from my mom because she was sick and the flu is highly contagious and can be spread through simple touches and the illness soon absorbed into my skin. The flu is known as the influenza virus. The flu virus attacks the body by spreading through the upper and/or lower respiratory tract.

My symptoms were headache, dry cough, weakness or fatigue, sore throat and runny nose. Sometimes I would vomit severely.

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Pathogens and Anitgens

When I got sick, a pathogen had entered my body, which alerted antibodies that helped try to destroy it. Antigens are proteins that are found on the surface of the pathogen.

When an antigen enters the body, the immune system produces antibodies against it. Antibodies are always Y-shaped. A type of white blood cell called a lymphocyte recognizes the antigen as being foreign and produces antibodies that are specific to that antigen. Each antibody has a unique binding site shape which locks onto the specific shape of the antigen. The antibodies destroy the antigen (pathogen) which is then engulfed and digested by macrophages.

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