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Curr Opin Investig Drugs. 2002 Apr;3(4):533-7.

Antibiotics for the treatment of onchocerciasis and other filarial infections.

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Department of Helminthology, Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, Hamburg, Germany.


More effective drugs are needed for the treatment of human filarial diseases and the elimination of these infections as a public health problem. The drugs must either kill or sterilize adult worms. The relevant filariae, Onchocerca volvulus, Wuchereria bancofti and Brugia species, harbor rickettsial endoboacteria of the genus Wolbachia as symbionts. Animal experiments have shown that the elimination of these endobacteria causes inhibition of embryogenesis, and with Onchocerca ochengi a macrofilaricidal effect. Trials with human onchocerciasis patients using doxycydine demonstrated a long-term sterilizing activity, opening up a new strategy for the control of filarial infections. Indications of antiwolbachial therapy against onchocerciasis are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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