HL 2 Biology

11.1b Defense Against Disease

DBQ: Antibodies in Colostrum (p.234)

1) The ability of a calf to absorb antibodies decreases over the initial hours after birth.  The change is especially drastic in the first 6 hours  with a great drop in the percentage of antibodies absorbed, from 100% to 50%.  After the first 6 hours after birth, the calf continues to gradually decrease at a steady rate in its absorption in antibodies from 6 to 24 hours after it was born.

2) Calves that have endured a long and difficult birth may be more likely to suffer from infection because the time gap between the birth until the baby is able to take in colostrum is greater. Colostrum is the milk the mothers produce after childbirth and contains much antibodies. Since the calves ability to absorb the antibodies from their mothers decrease over time, the vulnerability to antigens increases as well causing these calves to be more easily effected by infections.

3) Concentrations of antibodies might vary in the cow’s colostrum over the first 24 hours after birth as it would decrease over time. Although the calf’s colostrum may begin to increase its own antibodies in line with the increase in antibodies absorbed from its mother.

4) Sheep are vaccinated against pulp kidney and other life-threatening diseases three weeks before lambs are due to be born because after three weeks, sufficient amounts of antibodies would have been produced to terminate antigens. The sheep would still be able to secrete antibodies for the lamb after vaccination as well.

5) Active transport is likely to be used for absorption of antibodies in the stomach of newborn mammals because antibodies are a type of protein and thus would need to do active transport in order to transport across the membranes.

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