Hypersensitivity reaction associated with hemolytic disease of the newborn : - autoimmunity -...


Hypersensitivity reaction associated with hemolytic disease of the newborn :

- autoimmunity

- anaphylactic reaction

- cell-mediated reaction

- cytotoxic reaction

- immune-complex reaction


Hypersensitivity is a condition in which the immune system reacts abnormally to a foreign substance and produces an exaggerated immune response against an antigen. Hypersensitivity results in inflammatory responses that are damaging to the body of the host. Hypersensitivity is of four types: Type-I (IgE mediated), Type-II (IgG or IgM-mediated), Type-III (Immune-complex mediated), and Type-IV (cell-mediated).

Answer and Explanation: 1

The hypersensitivity reaction that is associated with hemolytic disease of the newborn is cytotoxic reaction. The cytotoxic reaction is a Type-II hypersensitivity reaction that is mediated by IgG or IgM antibodies. Hemolytic disease of the newborn is also known as Erythroblastosis fetalis.

This hypersensitivity results due to Rh incompatibility between the blood of the mother and the fetus. During the first pregnancy, the mother's immune system develops antibodies against the Rh antigens present on the fetus's red blood cells. During the subsequent pregnancy, upon detection of the Rh antigens, the memory B-cells against the Rh antigens that are already present in the blood of the mother cause a heightened immune response by secreting IgG antibodies against the fetal Rh antigens. These anti-Rh IgG antibodies cross the placenta and attack the fetal blood cells (RBCs) resulting in Erythroblastosis fetalis.

Learn more about this topic:

Rh Blood Group, Rh Factor & Erythroblastosis Fetalis


Chapter 13 / Lesson 6

The Rh blood group system is a classification system for blood based on the presence or absence of Rh antigen. Individuals who possess the Rh antigen are considered Rh positive, whereas individuals who do not carry the antigen are considered Rh negative. Learn about blood groups, the Rh blood group system, Rh negative blood, and the effect of Rh factor in erythroblastosis fetalis.

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