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When each of the components in the cascade are

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Unformatted text preview: ement System & Innate Immunity What is complement and what does it do? Antibodies have 2 identical paratopes, but no intrinsic killing ability. The complement cascade’s most important function is endowing antibody with the ability to kill pathogens. Complement is a system of plasma proteins some of which are inactive proteases activated by cleavage (termed zymogens) inactive serine proteases This is an amplification system, you can initiate with a small number of components. When each of the components in the cascade are cleaved by serine proteases, they are cleaved into 2 pieces. These can be called a and b fragments. The a fragment is smaller and soluble, the b is bigger and is binding. B is covalently bound to the pathogen surface. The complement system got it’s name by complementing the a...
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