The immune system is a highly evolved network of cells and molecules that can distinguish between invading pathogens and the body's own cells. But helminths, in their complex forms, are capable of down-regulating host immunity, protecting them from being eliminated and also minimizing severe pathology in the host. This review focuses on Strongyloides stercoralis and the immune responses in immunocompetent and/or immunocompromised individuals. It also highlights the implications for diagnosis/treatment and draws attention to an emerging public health disease. The solution to reducing the prevalence of strongyloidiasis remains on the effectiveness of pre-emptive measures in endemic communities, increased awareness, prompt early diagnosis as well as timely treatment.
Crown Copyright 2009. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.