Anthelmintics or antihelminthics are drugs that expel parasitic worms (helminths) from the body, by either stunning or killing them. They may also be called vermifuges (stunning) or vermicides (killing).

Pharmaceutical classes

Examples of pharmaceuticals used as anthelmintics include:
* Albendazole – effective against threadworms, roundworms, whipworms, tapeworms, hookworms
* Diethylcarbamazine – effective against "Wuchereria bancrofti", "Brugia malayi", "Brugia timori", tropical pulmonary eosinophilia, loiasis
* Mebendazole – effective against pinworms, roundworms and hookworms
* Niclosamide – effective against tapeworms
* Ivermectin – effective against most common intestinal worms (except tapeworms)
* Suramin
* Thiabendazole – effective against roundworms, hookworms
* Pyrantel pamoate – effective against most nematode infections
* Levamisole
* Piperazine family
* Praziquantel – effective against nematodes, some trematodes
* Triclabendazole – effective against liver flukes
* Octadepsipeptides (eg: Emodepside) – effective against a variety of gastrointestinal helminths
* Amino Acetonitrile derivatives (eg: Monepantel): effective against a variety of gastrointestinal helminths including those resistant to the other drug classes.

Please note that many of these pharameuticals are extremely toxic. Taken in improper dosages they can be dangerous to humans as well as lethal to parasites.

Natural anthelmintics

Examples of naturally occuring anthelmintics include:
*"Tobacco" ("Nicotiana tabacum" & "Nicotiana rustica") ["The Merck Index", 12th Ed., page 1119: entry 6611 "Nicotine", Merck & Co. 1996]
*"Moringa Oleifera" ("Moringaceae") ("Micronutrient Powder")
*"Black walnut" ("Juglans nigra")
*"wormwood" ("Artemisia absynthium")
*"clove" ("Syzygium aromaticum")
*"tansy tea" ("Tanacetum vulgare")
*"Hagenia" "(Hagenia abyssinica)"
*"kalonji" ("Nigella sativa") seeds
*"male fern" ("Dryopteris filix-mas")
*"Plumeria" ("P. acutifolia" or "P. rubra") in Brazilian folk medicine.cite book
last = Arnold, M.D.
first = Harry L.
title = Poisonous Plants of Hawaii
publisher = Charles E. Tuttle Co.
year = 1968
location = Tokyo, Japan
pages = 51
ISBN = 0804804745
*"Peganum harmala" is used as an anthelmintic.cite web|url= |title=Peganum harmala |accessdate=2008-02-02 |year=2004 ]

Please note that many natural vermifuges or anthelmintics are poisonous and, in improper dosages, dangerous to humans as well as parasites.

Anthelmintic resistance

The ability of worms to survive treatments that are generally effective at the recommended dose rate is considered a major threat to the current future control of worm parasites of small ruminants and horses.

The clinical definition of resistance is a 95% or less reduction in a "Fecal Egg Count" test.Clarifyme|date=January 2008

Development of resistance

Treatment eliminates worms whose genotype renders them susceptible.Worms that are resistant survive and pass on their "resistance" genes.Resistant worms accumulate and finally treatment failure occurs.



General references


External links


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • anthelmintic — [ant΄hel min′tik, an΄thelmin′ik] adj. [ ANT(I) + Gr helmins (gen. helminthos), worm + IC] killing or ejecting intestinal worms n. an anthelmintic medicine …   English World dictionary

  • Anthelmintic — anthelminthic anthelminthic, Anthelmintic An thel*min tic([a^]n th[e^]l*m[i^]n t[i^]k), a. [Pref. anti + Gr. e lmins, inqos, worm, esp. a tapeworm, or mawworm. See also {helminth}] (Med.) capable of expelling or destroying parasitic worms. n. An… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • anthelmintic — /ant hel min tik, an thel /, Pharm. adj. 1. of or pertaining to a substance capable of destroying or eliminating parasitic worms, esp. human intestinal helminths. n. 2. any such substance. [1675 85; ANT + HELMINT(H)IC] * * * ▪ drug       any drug …   Universalium

  • anthelmintic — 1. adjective Destructive to parasitic intestinal worms Research is progressing well on finding native plants with anthelmintic properties. 2. noun Any drug that causes the expulsion or death of intestinal worms …   Wiktionary

  • anthelmintic — 1. An agent that destroys or expels intestinal worms. SYN: anthelminthic, antihelminthic, helminthagogue, helminthic (2), helmintic (2), vermifuge. 2. Having the power to destroy or expel intestinal worms. SYN …   Medical dictionary

  • anthelmintic — /ænθəlˈmɪntɪk/ (say anthuhl mintik) adjective 1. destroying or expelling intestinal worms. –noun 2. an anthelmintic remedy. Also, anthelminthic. {New Latin anth antho + Greek helminth worm + ic; originally anthelminthic in English, then… …   Australian English dictionary

  • anthelmintic — adjective Etymology: anti + Greek helminth , helmis worm Date: 1684 expelling or destroying parasitic worms especially of the intestine • anthelmintic noun …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • anthelmintic — ant•hel•min•tic [[t]ˌænt hɛlˈmɪn tɪk, ˌæn θɛl [/t]] adj. 1) pha of or pertaining to a substance capable of destroying or eliminating parasitic worms, esp. human intestinal helminths 2) pha an anthelmintic substance • Etymology: 1675–85; ant… …   From formal English to slang

  • anthelmintic — См. anthelminthic …   Dictionary of invertebrate zoology

  • anthelmintic — adj. destroying or removing intestinal worms n. substance which exterminates intestinal worms …   English contemporary dictionary

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