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Important step-forward in mission to tackle parasitic worm infections

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Gastrointestinal parasitic infections, which are worm infections in the intestine, affect nearly one quarter of the world population and have been heavily linked with poverty in poorer regions.

They normally result in a chronic, long-lived infection associated with poor quality of life and health problems.

A team led by Dr Mark Travis, MCCIR and the Wellcome Trust Centre for Cell-Matrix Research, has identified a pathway which seems to be important in driving the chronic infection and that could now potentially be targeted for therapy.

Dr Travis, from The University of Manchester’s Faculty of Life Sciences, said: “Current treatments involve the use of drugs that expel parasitic worms from the body by killing them. But this does not prevent rapid re-infection with worms and sufferers often encounter problems with drug resistance.

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