Protective immune mechanisms in helminth infection

Nat Rev Immunol. 2007 Dec;7(12):975-87. doi: 10.1038/nri2199.


Important insights have recently been gained in our understanding of how host immune responses mediate resistance to parasitic helminths and control associated pathological responses. Although similar cells and cytokines are evoked in response to infection by helminths as diverse as nematodes and schistosomes, the components of the response that mediate protection are dependent on the particular parasite. In this Review, we examine recent findings regarding the mechanisms of protection in helminth infections that have been elucidated in murine models and discuss the implications of these findings in terms of future therapies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Basophils / physiology
  • Cytokines / physiology
  • Eosinophils / physiology
  • Granuloma / immunology
  • Helminthiasis / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate
  • Macrophages / immunology
  • Mast Cells / physiology
  • Neutrophils / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / physiology
  • Th2 Cells / immunology*


  • Cytokines