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n. a type of antibody, formed against an allergen, that has special affinity for cell membranes and remains fixed in various tissues. Subsequent contact with the allergen causes damage to the tissues when the antigen-antibody reaction occurs. The damaged cells, particularly mast cells, release histamine and serotonin, which are responsible for the local inflammation of an allergy or the very severe effects of anaphylactic shock (see anaphylaxis). Reagins belong to the IgE class of immunoglobulins.

Subjects: Chemistry — Medicine and Health.

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