Complement - degranulation The complement system can be...

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Complement COMPONENTS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE COMPLEMENT SYSTEM The complement system found in the blood of mammals is composed of heat labile substances (proteins) that combine with antibodies or cell surfaces. This complex, multicomponent system is composed of about 26 proteins. The "complement cascade" is constitutive and non-specific but it must be activated in order to function. The functions of complement include: making bacteria more susceptible to phagocytosis directly lysing some bacteria and foreign cells producing chemotactic substances increasing vascular permeability causing smooth muscle contraction promoting mast cell
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Unformatted text preview: degranulation The complement system can be activated via two distinct pathways; the classical pathway and the alternate pathway. Once initiated, a cascade of events (the "complement cascade") ensues, providing the functions listed above. Most of the complement components are numbered (e.g. C1, C2, C3, etc.) but some are simply refered to as "Factors". Some of the components must be enzymatically cleaved to activate their function; others simply combine to form complexes that are active. The following table lists these components and their functions....
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