hapten

/hap"ten/, n. Immunol.
a substance having a single antigenic determinant that can react with a previously existing antibody but cannot stimulate more antibody production unless combined with other molecules; a partial antigen.
Also, haptene /hap"teen/.
[1920-25; < G < Gk hápt(ein) to grasp + G -en -ENE]

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also spelled  haptene 

      small molecule that stimulates the production of antibody molecules only when conjugated to a larger molecule, called a carrier molecule.

      The term hapten is derived from the Greek haptein, meaning “to fasten.” Haptens can become tightly fastened to a carrier molecule, most often a protein, by a covalent bond. The hapten-carrier complex stimulates the production of antibodies, which the unbound hapten cannot do, and becomes immunogenic (capable of eliciting an immune response). The hapten then reacts specifically with the antibodies generated against it to produce an immune or allergic response. Thus, although the hapten cannot elicit an antibody response on its own, it can bind with antibodies and act as an antigen. In the early part of the 20th century, immunologist Karl Landsteiner (Landsteiner, Karl) exploited the antigenic quality of synthetic haptens to study the highly specific way in which antibodies bind to antigens.

      Many drugs that cause allergic reactions, such as penicillin, act as haptens. When injected or ingested, penicillin reacts chemically with proteins in the body to form a hapten-carrier complex that can lead to the life-threatening syndrome called anaphylaxis. Other haptens include synthetic substances, such as the organic compounds benzene arsonate or trinitrophenol, and naturally occurring polysaccharides, such as lactose. Researchers have used haptens to construct synthetic vaccines (vaccine) to immunize people against various infectious organisms.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • hapten — hapten. См. полуантиген. (Источник: «Англо русский толковый словарь генетических терминов». Арефьев В.А., Лисовенко Л.А., Москва: Изд во ВНИРО, 1995 г.) …   Молекулярная биология и генетика. Толковый словарь.

  • hapten — HAPTÉN s. n. substanţă care, asociată cu o protidă, îi conferă calităţile unui antigen. (< fr. haptène) Trimis de raduborza, 15.09.2007. Sursa: MDN …   Dicționar Român

  • hapten — [hap′tēn΄hap′ten΄] n. [Ger < Gr haptein, to fasten, touch + Ger en, ENE] a compound which, when coupled with a protein or other molecule, can cause the formation of antibodies: also haptene [hap′tēn΄] haptenic [hap ten′ik] adj …   English World dictionary

  • Hapten — A hapten is a small molecule which can elicit an immune response only when attached to a large carrier such as a protein; the carrier may be one which also does not elicit an immune response by itself. (Generally, only large molecules, infectious …   Wikipedia

  • hapten — Could be considered an isolated epitope: although a hapten (by definition) has an antibody directed against it, the hapten alone will not induce an immune response if injected into an animal, it must be conjugated to a carrier (usually a protein) …   Dictionary of molecular biology

  • Hapten — Haptene sind kleine organische Moleküle, wie z. B. Atrazin oder Digoxigenin. Sie gehören zur Gruppe der Antigene, unterscheiden sich jedoch von diesen dadurch, dass sie nicht alleine in der Lage sind, eine Immunreaktion hervorzurufen. Dies ist… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • hapten — A molecule that is incapable, alone, of causing the production of antibodies but can, however, combine with a larger antigenic molecule called a carrier. A h. carrier complex can stimulate production of antibodies, some of which combine with the… …   Medical dictionary

  • hapten — /ˈhæptən/ (say haptuhn) noun a small molecule which cannot by itself elicit an immune response but which needs to be attached to a larger carrier in order to do so. {German hapten, from Greek haptein to fasten} …   Australian English dictionary

  • hapten — noun Etymology: German, from Greek haptein to fasten Date: 1921 a small separable part of an antigen that reacts specifically with an antibody but is incapable of stimulating antibody production except in combination with a carrier protein… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • hapten — (hap ten) A molecule not immunogenic by itself but that, when coupled to a macromolecular carrier, can elicit antibodies directed against itself …   Dictionary of microbiology

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