7.2 Lectures 1 and 2 ( Dr. Lindy Holden-Dye)                      Back

To introduce chemotherapy of nematodes with special
reference to Ascaris and to discuss potential novel methods
for drug assessment. Parasitic helminths are the greatest
cause of human morbidity and mortality. One billion people
are infested with the nematode Ascaris alone and many more
species of helminth infest and debilitate man. A recent
recommendation to the WHO from the Parasitic Diseases
Programme (1990) was to: " Promote original and innovative
research of the biology of Ascaris lumbricoides: scientific
knowledge is fundamental to every control programme.
Encourage the use of Ascaris as a model for fundamental
research on the molecular biology and immunology of
helminths in man."


These 2 lectures are an introduction to
nematodes followed by a consideration of Ascaris
as an experimental preparation for the study of parasitic
helminths and C. elegans as a model genetic animal to define the
molecular targets of drug action. A description of the most widely used
chemotherapies will be given and prospects for advancement in this field
will be discussed.

Lecture summary:
The nervous system of helminths as a target for
chemotherapy Methods used:
Histological, histochemical & immunocytochemical techniques
Electrophysiological techniques , Molecular biological
Functional studies on the parasitic nematode Ascaris
Molecular and genetic studies on C. elegans.
Mechanism of action
of anthelmintics: benzimidazoles, piperazine, levamisole, ivermectin
Future prospects for parasitic helminth control: The problems of drug
resistance; Development of drugs with resistance breaking properties.

Dr. L. Holden-Dye