Regulation of the host immune system by helminth parasites

Rick M. Maizels (Lead / Corresponding author), Henry J. McSorley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

299 Citations (Scopus)
39 Downloads (Pure)


Helminth parasite infections are associated with a battery of immunomodulatory mechanisms that affect all facets of the host immune response to ensure their persistence within the host. This broad-spectrum modulation of host immunity has intended and unintended consequences, both advantageous and disadvantageous. Thus the host can benefit from suppression of collateral damage during parasite infection and from reduced allergic, autoimmune, and inflammatory reactions. However, helminth infection can also be detrimental in reducing vaccine responses, increasing susceptibility to coinfection and potentially reducing tumor immunosurveillance. In this review we will summarize the panoply of immunomodulatory mechanisms used by helminths, their potential utility in human disease, and prospective areas of future research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)666-675
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number3
Early online date29 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2016


  • Allergy
  • infection
  • pathology
  • therapy
  • tolerance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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