Immunologic detection of Lyme disease and the related borrelioses

Publication date: Available online 31 December 2019Source: Methods in MicrobiologyAuthor(s): Charles S. PaviaAbstractLyme disease and the relapsing fever borrelioses are caused by spirochetal bacteria belonging to the genus Borrelia. They have a partially restricted worldwide distribution depending upon their species. They are transmitted to people following exposure to the following arthropod vectors: ticks (for Lyme disease and endemic relapsing fever) and lice (for epidemic relapsing fever). Soon after a cutaneous infection becomes established, these spirochetes disseminate via the haematogenous route and are capable of causing multi-system disturbances that can vary in their degree of morbidity. Unlike most bacteria, the Borrelia are somewhat difficult to culture, which often makes isolating them from a patient specimen for diagnostic purposes a generally low-yield procedure. They stain poorly or cannot be stained at all by the gram stain technique, but they can be readily visualized using Wright's or Giemsa stain. Various laboratory-based detection systems are available to the healthcare community for diagnostic purposes, and many of them are immunologically based, relying heavily on serologic techniques. These tests are well described in this chapter, along with an in-depth analysis of their advantages and potential pitfalls. For Lyme disease, serologic techniques have proven to be indispensable for confirming or to rule out the diagnosis especially in troublesome cases...
Source: Methods in Microbiology - Category: Microbiology Source Type: research

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