Diseases

Spleen function

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The spleen function exists among other things in the immune defense and blood purification. Despite these important tasks, the spleen is not one of the vital organs. If it has to be surgically removed, other body organs can partially take over their tasks. Find out more about the spleen function here!

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  • What does the spleen do?
  • Can one live without spleen?

What does the spleen do?

Although the spleen is not a vital organ, it performs important tasks. Thus, the spleen function comprises the following tasks:

Cold? How the immune system works Every day we are exposed to countless pathogens. Learn how the defense works. Every day we are exposed to countless pathogens. Learn how the defense works.

immune functions

The spleen function plays an important role in the immune system: the small organ is involved in the formation, maturation and storage of lymphocytes - a subset of white blood cells, which is important for the defense against pathogens. In addition, the spleen with the macrophages (phagocytes) produces more defensive soldiers.

The so-called T-lymphocytes are deposited together with dendritic cells as periarterial lymphatic sheaths (PALS) around fine arterial vessels (arterioles) in the spleen. On the PALS B lymphocytes are arranged as lymphatic follicles. PALS and lymphoid follicles form the white pulp in the spleen.

The dendritic cells monitor the blood that flows through the spleen. Find antigens in them (such as particles of pathogens), pick them up and present them on their cell surface. These antigen-presenting cells activate the T lymphocytes, which in turn activate the B lymphocytes.

The activated B-lymphocytes proliferate (proliferation) and transform into plasma cells. These produce and secrete appropriate antibodies against the antigen detected in the blood. By binding the antibodies to the antigen, they label it. Then, for example, it can be phagocytosed ("eaten") by macrophages.

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