immunoglobulin A


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immunoglobulin A

n. Abbr. IgA
1. The class of antibodies found predominantly in body secretions such as saliva, tears, breast milk, and mucous secretions of the gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts, functioning to prevent attachment of viruses and bacteria to epithelial surfaces and to neutralize toxins.
2. An antibody of this class.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.immunoglobulin A - one of the most common of the five major classes of immunoglobulins; the chief antibody in the membranes of the gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts
Ig, immune gamma globulin, immune globulin, immune serum globulin, immunoglobulin - a class of proteins produced in lymph tissue in vertebrates and that function as antibodies in the immune response
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References in periodicals archive ?
Samples of their saliva were then tested for immunoglobulin A - an antibody which is the body's first defence against infection.
The cause of stiff-person syndrome remains unclear, but the presence of antibodies that hinder [gamma]-aminobutyric acid in some patients prompted the researchers to test intravenous immunoglobulin as a treatment.