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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2010, Article ID 958108, 8 pages
Review Article

Nitric Oxide and Respiratory Helminthic Diseases

1Laboratorio de Inmunología Parasitaria y Molecular, Centro de Investigación de Enfermedades Tropicales de la Universidad de Salamanca (CIETUS), Campus Miguel de Unamuno s/n, 37007 Salamanca, Spain
2Unidad de Enfermedades Infecciosas y Medicina Tropical, Servicio de Medicina Interna, Hospital Universitario de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de las Palmas de Gran Canaria, 35080 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

Received 3 July 2009; Accepted 12 October 2009

Academic Editor: Luis I. Terrazas

Copyright © 2010 Antonio Muro and José-Luís Pérez-Arellano. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Nitric oxide (NO) is a very simple molecule that displays very important functions both in helminths (mainly those involved in respiratory pathology) and in mammalian hosts. In this paper we review four issues related to interaction of NO and lung helminthic diseases. Firstly, we evaluated data available on the NO synthesis and release by helminths and their biological role. Next, we summarized the effect of antigens obtained from different phases of the biological cycle on NO production by host mammalian cells (mainly from human sources). Thirdly, we revised the evaluation of NO on the biological activities and/or the viability of respiratory helminths. Lastly, the deleterious consequences of increased production of NO during helminthic human infection are detailed.