Patho Patho #18


The nurse is conducting a staff in-service on the various types of immunity. Teaching has been understood when one of the participants states which is a form of adaptive acquired immunity:


  1. Immunity passed from a mother to a child through breast-milk.
    • Rationale:

      This answer choice is not correct because when antibodies are passed from a mother to child, this is known as passive immunity.

  2. The client is injected with a specific immunoglobulin.
    • Rationale:

      This answer choice is not correct because when a client is injected with a specific immunoglobulin, passive immunity is acquired.

  3. A Type IV hypersensitivity reaction to a foreign substance.
    • Rationale:

      This answer choice is not correct because a type IV hypersensitivity reaction is a specific type of hypersensitivity reaction that develops gradually after exposure to a chemical or substance to which one is allergic.

  4. When a client develops antibodies after contracting a specific disease.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because the development of antibodies after exposure to a specific disease is called adaptive acquired immunity. This is an active form of immunity in which the body forms antibodies actively in response to exposure to a specific pathogen.


The focus of this question is asking the nurse to determine which is an example of adaptive acquired immunity. This type of immunity uses specific antigens to mount an immune response. Antibodies that develop after exposure to a disease lead to the development of adaptive acquired immunity to a specific pathogen.


Learning Outcomes

Adaptive acquired immunity is a component of the immune system composed of specialized cells that recognize certain pathogens. Adaptive immunity occurs after an immunological memory is formed following exposure to a particular pathogen. Adaptive acquired immunity develops after contracting a specific disease or a disease is introduced via vaccination.

Test Taking Tip

Look for keywords in the stem of the question. The word “adaptive” implies that the body must adapt which is an active process. The production of antibodies is an active process making option 4 the correct answer.

Video Rationale