Experimental human hookworm infection: a narrative historical review

Chapman, Paul R., Giacomin, Paul, Loukas, Alex, and McCarthy, James S. (2021) Experimental human hookworm infection: a narrative historical review. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 15 (12). e0009908.

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In 1896, a serendipitous laboratory accident led to the understanding that hookworms propagate infection by penetrating skin, a theory that was then confirmed with the first experimental human infection, reported in 1901. Experimental human infections undertaken in the 20th century enabled understanding of the natural history of infection and the immune response. More recently, experimental hookworm infection has been performed to investigate the immunomodulatory potential of hookworm infection and for the evaluation of hookworm vaccines and chemotherapeutic interventions. Experimental human hookworm infection has been proven to be safe, with no deaths observed in over 500 participants (although early reports predate systematic adverse event reporting) and no serious adverse events described in over 200 participants enrolled in contemporary clinical trials. While experimental human hookworm infection holds significant promise, as both a challenge model for testing anti-hookworm therapies and for treating various diseases of modernity, there are many challenges that present. These challenges include preparation and storage of larvae, which has not significantly changed since Harada and Mori first described their coproculture method in 1955. In vitro methods of hookworm larval culture, storage, and the development of meaningful potency or release assays are required. Surrogate markers of intestinal infection intensity are required because faecal egg counts or hookworm faecal DNA intensity lack the fidelity required for exploration of hookworm infection as a vaccine/drug testing platform or as a regulated therapy.

Item ID: 72576
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1935-2735
Copyright Information: © 2021 Chapman et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Funders: National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC)
Projects and Grants: NHMRC 1117504, NHMRC 1135955, NHMRC 1105300
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2022 23:00
FoR Codes: 32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3207 Medical microbiology > 320704 Medical parasitology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2001 Clinical health > 200105 Treatment of human diseases and conditions @ 100%
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