antibody

noun

an·​ti·​body ˈan-ti-ˌbä-dē How to pronounce antibody (audio)
: any of a large number of proteins of high molecular weight that are produced normally by specialized B cells after stimulation by an antigen and act specifically against the antigen in an immune response, that are produced abnormally by some cancer cells, and that typically consist of four subunits including two heavy chains and two light chains

called also immunoglobulin

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The death of a participant in a clinical trial of an antibody treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, which is now under consideration by the US Food and Drug Administration, may be linked to the experimental drug, a new report shows. Amanda Sealy, CNN, 4 Jan. 2023 The story is similar for bebtelovimab, a monoclonal antibody treatment to help people with mild to moderate cases of COVID-19 avoid becoming severely ill. Karen Kaplanscience And Medicine Editor Dec. 13, Los Angeles Times, 13 Dec. 2022 But the immune-evasive strains recently forced the FDA to bench the last available antibody treatment for COVID-19 patients. Alexander Tin, CBS News, 9 Dec. 2022 But, the antibody treatment isn’t tied to just cancer. Joshua Hawkins, BGR, 22 Nov. 2022 The shape-shifting coronavirus has a track record of mutating in ways that reduced the effectiveness of vaccines and antibody treatments. Karen Kaplanscience And Medicine Editor Dec. 13, Los Angeles Times, 13 Dec. 2022 The virus has found ways around antibody treatments by evolving new versions of its spike protein. oregonlive, 7 Dec. 2022 Studies have shown that, going by antibody levels, recovering from COVID is already a good booster. Benjamin Mazer, The Atlantic, 7 Dec. 2022 New findings show that updated boosters by Pfizer and Moderna are better than their predecessors at increasing antibody levels against the most common version of the virus now circulating. Joseph Goldstein, New York Times, 6 Dec. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'antibody.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1894, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of antibody was in 1894

Dictionary Entries Near antibody

Cite this Entry

“Antibody.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/antibody. Accessed 1 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

antibody

noun
an·​ti·​body ˈant-i-ˌbäd-ē How to pronounce antibody (audio)
: a substance produced by special cells of the body that combines with an antigen and counteracts its effects or those of the microscopic plant or animal on which the antigen may occur

Medical Definition

antibody

noun
an·​ti·​body ˈant-i-ˌbäd-ē How to pronounce antibody (audio)
plural antibodies
: any of a large number of proteins of high molecular weight that are produced normally by specialized B cells after stimulation by an antigen and act specifically against the antigen in an immune response, that are produced abnormally by some cancer cells, and that typically consist of four subunits including two heavy chains and two light chains

called also immunoglobulin

More from Merriam-Webster on antibody

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