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Conference on Contended Issues of Immunity to Schistosomes

Franz Von LichtenbergDepartment of Pathology, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital, Fogarty International Center, National Institutes of Health, Boston, Massachusetts

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Research efforts aimed toward immunologic control of schistosomiasis have progressed substantially over the last two decades, propelled by the surge of basic immunology and nourished by the active interest of international, U.S., and private granting organizations. By general agreement, the goal of control is now defined as reduction of schistosomiasis morbidity and mortality by lowering intensity of infection, rather than as total eradication. The knowledge gained thus far strongly encourages further research efforts but, with increasing research volume there also has been increasing divergence of results and contention of views. Any newcomer today has to plow through a bewildering mass of partly contradictory evidence to gain an overview of the current state of the art.

To help resolve some of the major contended issues of immunity to schistosomes, a conference-workshop was organized and was attended by 72 participants from 13 countries, worldwide.