Knowledge of pattern and process in helminth population biology is mostly based on the endemic equilibrium state that characterises infections before control. Current large-scale intervention programmes aim at controlling/eliminating helminth infection, transmission and morbidity. As a result, age-infection profiles will be modified; immune responses will be affected; underlying parasite distributions may become more aggregated; density-dependent regulatory processes will relax; and the contribution to transmission and morbidity of different host population groups will shift. There is an urgent need to understand how the paradigm that has guided parasite population biology research is changing under chemotherapy-based control programmes for this research to continue supporting parasite control efforts effectively.
How parasite control may alter pattern and process in human helminthiases