Invertebrate Immunity: Another Viewpoint

Edwin L. Cooper, Baruch Rinkevich, Gerhard Uhlenbruck, Pierre Valembois

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


All vertebrates and invertebrates manifest self/non‐self recognition. Any attempt to answer the question of adaptive significance of recognition must take into account the universality of receptor‐mediated responses. These may lake two forms: (1) rearranging, clonally distributed antigen‐specific receptors that distinguish in the broadest sense between self and non‐self, and non‐self A from non‐self B, latecomers on the evolutionary scene; (2) pattern recognition receptors, the earliest to evolve and still around, necessitating the requirement for induced second signals in T‐ and B‐cell activation. Either strategy need not force upon invertebrates the organization, structure and adaptive functions of vertebrate immune systems. Thus, we can freely delve into the unique aspects of the primitive immune mechanisms of invertebrates. In contrast, using the opposite strategy which is still problematic, i.e. linking invertebrate and vertebrate defence, seems to give us an approach to universality that might eventually reveal homologous kinship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-266
Number of pages20
JournalScandinavian Journal of Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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