Views And Reviews

Parasites on the defensive

BMJ 1994; 308 doi: (Published 07 May 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;308:1243
  1. B Dixon

    A scaris worms inhabit the small intestine of humans and domestic animals. It's an environment rich, both quantitatively and qualitatively, in bacteria so we would expect these parasitic nematodes to have developed antibacterial defences. Yet no one seems to have even investigated the possibility, until very recently. Textbooks of parasitology provide ample material on the interactions between various species of Ascaris and their hosts - but virtually nothing about how the worms themselves cope with the microbial population surrounding them.

    Now, thanks to the efforts of Professor A C Wardlaw and collaborators in the microbiology and zoology departments at the …

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