Alveolar and cystic echinococcosis: towards novel chemotherapeutical treatment options

Hemphill, A.; Muller, J. (2009). Alveolar and cystic echinococcosis: towards novel chemotherapeutical treatment options. Journal of helminthology, 83(2), pp. 99-111. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 10.1017/S0022149X0928936X

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Echinococcus granulosus and Echinococcus multilocularis are cestode parasites, of which the metacestode (larval) stages cause the neglected diseases cystic echinococcosis (CE) and alveolar echinococcosis (AE), respectively. The benzimidazoles albendazole and mebendazole are presently used for the chemotherapeutical treatment, alone or prior to and after surgery. However, in AE these benzimidazoles do not appear to be parasiticidal in vivo. In addition, failures in drug treatments as well as the occurrence of side-effects have been reported, leading to discontinuation of treatment or to progressive disease. Therefore, new drugs are needed to cure AE and CE. Strategies that are currently employed in order to identify novel chemotherapeutical treatment options include in vitro and in vivo testing of broad-spectrum anti-infective drugs or drugs that interfere with unlimited proliferation of cancer cells. The fact that the genome of E. multilocularis has recently been sequenced has opened other avenues, such as the selection of novel drugs that interfere with the parasite signalling machinery, and the application of in silico approaches by employing the Echinococcus genome information to search for suitable targets for compounds of known mode of action.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Institute of Parasitology

UniBE Contributor:

Hemphill, Andrew and Müller, Heinz Joachim




Cambridge University Press




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 15:25

Last Modified:

24 Oct 2019 20:49

Publisher DOI:


Web of Science ID:




URI: (FactScience: 221173)

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