Immune Finding Aids Quest for Vaccines to Beat Tropical Infections

Monday, March 18, 2013

Researchers studying infections caused by parasitic worms — which can lead to diseases such as elephantiasis and river blindness — have shown how these can shut down a part of the immune system that might otherwise fight sickness. Preventing this immune reaction enables the infection to persist, causing chronic illness.

Scientists have also shown how this immune response can be re-activated to fight invading parasites, and enable the immune system to develop natural resistance to infection.

Their findings could help inform the development of vaccines for these types of infections. They also point towards potential treatments for allergies, which occur when the same part of the immune system over-reacts to irritants.

Source: Science Daily (link opens in a new window)

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