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Trends Parasitol. 2015 Sep;31(9):435-41. doi: 10.1016/j.pt.2015.04.008. Epub 2015 May 16.

A worm of one's own: how helminths modulate host adipose tissue function and metabolism.

Author information

1
Department of Parasitology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands; Department of Molecular Cellular Biology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands.
2
Department of Microbiology & Immunology, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA; Department of Laboratory Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA. Electronic address: ari.molofsky@ucsfmedctr.org.

Abstract

Parasitic helminths have coexisted with human beings throughout time. Success in eradicating helminths has limited helminth-induced morbidity and mortality but is also correlated with increasing rates of 'western' diseases, including metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Recent studies in mice describe how type 2 immune cells, traditionally associated with helminth infection, maintain adipose tissue homeostasis and promote adipose tissue beiging, protecting against obesity and metabolic dysfunction. Here, we review these studies and discuss how helminths and helminth-derived molecules may modulate these physiologic pathways to improve metabolic functions in specific tissues, such as adipose and liver, as well as at the whole-organism level.

KEYWORDS:

adipose tissue; diabetes; helminth; metabolism; type 2 immunity

PMID:
25991556
PMCID:
PMC4567404
DOI:
10.1016/j.pt.2015.04.008
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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