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Parasitology Research

, Volume 100, Issue 5, pp 921–927 | Cite as

The use of Trichuris suis and other helminth therapies to treat Crohn’s disease

  • Aditya Reddy
  • Bernard Fried
Review

Abstract

Infections with gastrointestinal (GI) nematodes are prevalent worldwide, despite the fact that anti-helminthic medications are regarded as safe, efficient, and widely available globally. In this review, we highlight the potential therapeutic benefits that may be realized through the clinical use of Trichuris suis and other helminths for Crohn’s disease (CD). Long-lived helminthic parasites are remarkable in their ability to down-regulate host immunity, protecting themselves from elimination, and also minimize severe pathological host changes. This review summarizes what is known about the underlying mechanisms that may account for the observed patterns in humans treated with helminths for CD. The Th2 arm of the immune system is emphasized as a component of primary importance in the association between the host immune system and GI nematode infections. Although GI nematode infections in humans cause significant morbidity and mortality, the existence and nature of protective mechanisms these helminths may confer remain largely unclear.

Keywords

Helminth Infection Trichuris Intestinal Helminth Hygiene Hypothesis Regulatory Cytokine Production 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyLafayette CollegeEastonUSA

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