About the book
In the 21st century, infection with helminths still threatens human health in both developing and developed countries. The World Health Organization recently reported that infectious diseases are directly responsible for 15% of all deaths worldwide, making them a challenging area of investigation. In addition to bacteria and viruses, eukaryotic parasites, specifically, helminths also produce a large range of symptoms that can lead to disfiguring, debilitating, and lethal diseases. Among them, the helminth Schistosoma mansoni which is responsible for schistosomiasis is the highest cause of death by helminths. Other relevant eukaryotic parasites that significantly contribute to morbidity and mortality worldwide include Filarial worms, Echinococcus and Taenia. Antiparasitic drugs are available, but the existence of adverse effects and resistance events may jeopardize the efficient control of these infectious diseases. Moreover, no vaccines currently exist. Genome sequence analysis and multi-omics strategies mainly based on transcriptomics and proteomics have contributed a lot to extending our knowledge of helminths biology, virulence, and host-interactions. However, it is the computational integration of multi-omics data that will help us elucidate the molecular networks supporting these living systems, providing key elements for the development of more effective prevention, prophylaxis, diagnosis, and treatment.
In this book, we therefore aim to present the current landscape of helminths research that threaten human and other animal of veterinary importance health. We aim to bring together recent studies performed in helminth parasites, to gain new insights about parasite biology, host-parasite interactions, and potential targets for the development of novel drugs or vaccines. We welcome chapters, on host-helminths interactions, immune response to helminths, molecular biology of helminths, helminths omics, basic biology of helminths and their detection, diagnostics and drug development in research. Thus, this book intends to provide the reader with a comprehensive overview of the current state-of-the-art in helminths research, featuring an easy-to-follow, vignette-based format that focuses on the most important evidence-based developments in this critically important area of research.