One of the proteins Lee worked with is made by Haemonchus contortus, or the Barber's pole worm
, a veterinary parasite that attaches itself to the lining of the stomach of a ruminant such as a sheep and feeds on its blood, leaving the animal emaciated and anemic.
For example, the barber's pole worm (Haemonchus contortus), named for its spiraling red intestine, sucks blood fiercely enough to cause severe anemia.
Compounds called AADs, or aminoacetonitrile derivatives, kill barber's pole worms, even those resistant to current drugs, Kaminsky and an international team of colleagues report in the March 13 Nature.
The brown stomach worm (Ostertagia species) also causes illthrift, and anaemia, and death can rapidly follow the blood-sucking activities of the barber's pole worm (Haemonchus contortus).
In flocks selected for resistance to barber's pole worm, the number of eggs passed by sheep was halved in 10 years.