3D illustration of a tapeworm infestation in a human intestine
Return of the Worms
Immunologists and parasitologists are working to revive the idea that helminths, and more specifically the molecules they secrete, could help treat allergies and autoimmune disease.
ABOVE: © istock.com, Christoph Burgstedt
Return of the Worms
Return of the Worms

Immunologists and parasitologists are working to revive the idea that helminths, and more specifically the molecules they secrete, could help treat allergies and autoimmune disease.

Immunologists and parasitologists are working to revive the idea that helminths, and more specifically the molecules they secrete, could help treat allergies and autoimmune disease.

ABOVE: © istock.com, Christoph Burgstedt
helminths
December 2021 - Gut Guests - Infographic
Infographic: How Worms that Reside in the Gut Could Influence Health
Catherine Offord | Dec 1, 2021
Research in animals and people supports a range of mechanisms by which the parasites affect physiology and immune responses.
Colorized scanning electron micrograph of Salmonella bacteria in intestinal tissue
Gut Infections Help Shield Intestinal Neurons from Future Damage
Annie Melchor | Nov 19, 2021
In mice, a kind of immune memory appears to protect the cells against future harm, a finding that could provide insight into treatments for irritable bowel syndrome and other inflammatory digestive conditions.
Worm Infection Can Improve Gut Health: Study
Tanya Lewis | Apr 14, 2016
Parasitic worms promote the growth of beneficial intestinal microbes in a mouse model of inflammatory bowel disease.
Deep Doo-doo
Bob Grant | Jan 4, 2013
An open-access study explores the intricacies of parasite egg distribution and viability in human feces.
Can Worms Alleviate Autism?
Sabrina Richards | Nov 27, 2012
Autism researchers are testing the ability of whipworm eggs to treat autism in a new clinical trial.
Opening a Can of Worms
Bob Grant | Feb 1, 2011
A father’s determination to help his son resulted in an experimental treatment for autism that uses roundworms to modulate inflammatory immune responses. Can the worms be used to treat other diseases?
The Worm Crew
Bob Grant | Feb 1, 2011
Meet the people behind studies that use nematodes to treat inflammatory diseases. 
Parasites Unite!
Cristina Luiggi | Feb 1, 2011
Gabriele Sorci discusses how invaders can band together to more effectively infect hosts.
Basophil Roles
Richard P. Grant | Jan 1, 2011
Editor's choice in Immunology