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Immune monitoring of Trichuris suis egg therapy in multiple sclerosis patients

  • F. Benzel (a1), H. Erdur (a1), S. Kohler (a1) (a2), M. Frentsch (a2), A. Thiel (a2), L. Harms (a1), K.-P. Wandinger (a3) (a4) and B. Rosche (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 15 August 2011

Initial clinical trials using Trichuris suis eggs (TSO) in autoimmune diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease, revealed a striking suppressive effect on the autoimmune response. Here, we analysed the effect of TSO therapy on the course of multiple sclerosis (MS), as a Th1/Th17-associated autoimmune disease. Different immunological parameters in four patients with secondary progressive MS were surveyed during a 6-month therapy with TSO, focusing on the modulation of T-cell Th1–Th2 balance as well as on the innate immune response. We are able to show a slight downregulation of the Th1-associated cytokine pattern, especially relevant in interleukin (IL)-2 (P < 0.05 after 2 months of therapy), with a temporary increase of Th2-associated cytokines such as IL-4. Furthermore, mild eosinophily and changes in CD4+ and CD8+T cells and natural killer (NK) CD56 bright cell numbers were observed. The findings observed in this group of patients suggest that TSO therapy has a moderate immunomodulatory impact in MS.

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