Articles on Immunity

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A schoolteacher in the midst of receiving a full pe'a, the traditional Samoan tattoo generally worn by males. Christopher Lynn

Untangling tattoos’ influence on immune response

An anthropologist works in American Samoa, taking advantage of the island's longstanding tattoo culture to tease out the effects tattoos have on the body's immune function.
You might feel terrible. But your runny nose, sore throat and aches are signs your body is fighting the flu virus. And that’s a good thing. from www.shutterstock.com

Sick with the flu? Here’s why you feel so bad

How can a tiny flu virus make you feel so bad, all over? Here's what's behind your high temperature, muscle aches and other flu symptoms.
If a Canadian health-care professional believes that an adolescent is a mature minor and has not been vaccinated, they are legally and ethically obliged to provide them with information about vaccination. (Shutterstock)

Vaccination: In Canada, many teenagers don’t need parental consent

In Canada, the age of consent for health-care decisions is assessed on a case-by-case basis. It can be age 14, or sometimes even younger.
Vaccine work because they help create herd immunity. JPC-PROD/Shutterstock.com

3 ethical reasons for vaccinating your children

Billboards spreading misinformation on the risks of vaccination have popped up around American cities. A bioethicist explains why decisions not to vaccinate children are indefensible.
U.S. President Donald Trump during a campaign rally in Topeka, Kan., Oct. 6, 2018. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

From Caesar to Trump: Immunity is a hard thing to give up

US law says the president can't be indicted, an echo of ancient Roman law. The efforts Roman leader Julius Caesar made to maintain his immunity is a cautionary tale for America's political system.
A line of AR-15s are on display at gunmaker Daniel Defense in Georgia. AP Photo/Lisa Marie Pane

Why do gun-makers get special economic protection?

The gun industry has been virtually immune from liability for the deaths and injuries caused by its products since 2005. Can this change?
Could the yearly flu shot become a thing of the past? AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File

Influenza: The search for a universal vaccine

Flu virus mutates so quickly that one year's vaccine won't work on the next year's common strains. But rational design – a new way to create vaccines – might pave the way for more lasting solutions.
Parents are concerned combination vaccines, which protect against several diseases at once, can be too much for a young immune system to cope with. from www.shutterstock.com

No, combination vaccines don’t overwhelm kids’ immune systems

Vaccines against multiple diseases in one jab strengthen kids' immune systems, not weaken them. Here's why we shouldn't fear these combination vaccines.
It’s the ability of our immune system to remember past infections, and pass this memory on to our kids, that allows us to survive infectious diseases. from www.shutterstock.com

How we’ve evolved to fight the bugs that infect us

With so many microbes capable of hijacking and destroying us, how are we, as a species, still enduring?

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