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Live worms to cure asthma

Live worms have been used to cure asthma in a laboratory model, researchers claim.

Padraic Fallon from the Department of Biochemistry at Trinity College, Dublin, and his team used a schistosome worm to alter a person’s immune response. “We believe that this research will lead us to develop new ways of preventing and treating asthma and anaphylaxis, which can then be extended to inflammatory bowel disease and arthritis,” he said.

Previous studies have shown that people in developing countries have fewer allergies. For example, a study in African schoolchildren showed that those who were infected with worms had lower allergic responses to house dust mites than children with no worms.

Dr Fallon presented his findings at the BA Festival of Science in Dublin this week.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10020750

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