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Immune effector mechanisms against schistosomiasis: looking for a chink in the parasite's armour

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JournalTrends in parasitology
DatePublished - Sep 2009
Issue number9
Volume25
Number of pages9
Pages (from-to)423-431
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

A recombinant antigen vaccine against Schistosoma mansoni remains elusive, in part because the parasite deploys complex defensive and offensive strategies to combat immune attack. Nevertheless, research on rodent and primate models has shown that schistosomes can be defeated when appropriate responses are elicited. Acquired protection appears to involve protracted inhibition of larval migration or key molecular processes at the adult surfaces, not rapid cytolytic killing mechanisms. A successful vaccine will likely require a cocktail of antigens rather than a single recombinant protein. In addition, ways need to be found of keeping the immune system on permanent alert, either to achieve adequate inhibition of protein function in adults, or because a trickle of incoming parasites does not amplify the secondary response.

    Research areas

  • RADIATION-ATTENUATED VACCINE, HAMSTER-CHEEK POUCH, PROTEOMIC ANALYSIS, ADULT WORMS, IN-VIVO, CERCARIAL SECRETIONS, PROTECTIVE IMMUNITY, SURFACE-MEMBRANES, GENE-EXPRESSION, ANIMAL-MODELS

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