Targeting Multicopy Prophage Genes for the Increased Detection of Borrelia burgdorferi Sensu Lato (s.l.), the Causative Agents of Lyme Disease, in Blood

The successful treatment of Lyme disease (LD) is contingent on accurate diagnosis. However, current laboratory detection assays lack sensitivity in the early stages of the disease. Because delayed diagnosis of LD incurs high healthcare costs and great suffering, new highly sensitive tests are in need. To overcome these challenges, we developed an internally controlled quantitative PCR (Ter-qPCR) that targets the multicopy terminase large subunit (terL) gene encoded by prophages that are only found in LD-causing bacteria. The terL protein helps phages pack their DNA. Strikingly, the detection limit of the Ter-qPCR was analytically estimated to be 22 copies and one bacterial cell in bacteria spiked blood. Furthermore, significant quantitative differences was observed in terms of the amount of terL detected in healthy individuals and patients with either early or late disease. Together, the data suggests that the prophage-targeting PCR has significant power to improve success detection for LD. After rigorous clinical validation, this new test could deliver a step-change in the detection of LD. Prophage encoded markers are prevalent in many other pathogenic bacteria rendering this approach highly applicable to bacterial identification in general.
Source: Frontiers in Microbiology - Category: Microbiology Source Type: research

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Borrelia bavariensis is one of the agents of Lyme Borreliosis (or Lyme disease) in Eurasia. The genome of the Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato species complex, that includes B. bavariensis, is known to be very com...
Source: BMC Genomics - Category: Genetics & Stem Cells Authors: Tags: Research article Source Type: research
(Virginia Tech) Renowned tick immunobiologist Utpal Pal wants to adapt the rabies vaccination platform to produce antibodies that can protect against Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacteria responsible for Lyme disease. The intention is to apply this work to other tick-borne diseases in the future.
Source: EurekAlert! - Medicine and Health - Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news
The objective of the study was to determine the infection prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi, a causative agent of Lyme disease, in the province's ticks and the seroprevalence in its dogs. It was found that 97.8% (n = 368) of ticks submitted were Ixodes scapularis, a species capable of transmitting Borrelia burgdorferi; 10.3% of these ticks [95% confidence interval (CI): 3.6% to 17.0%] were infected. Provincial canine seroprevalence for the 199 submitted samples was estimated at 3.0% (95% CI: 1.0% to 5.1%). PMID: 33012828 [PubMed - in process]
Source: The Canadian Veterinary Journal - Category: Veterinary Research Authors: Tags: Can Vet J Source Type: research
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Source: European Journal of Ophthalmology - Category: Opthalmology Authors: Tags: Eur J Ophthalmol Source Type: research
Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases, Ahead of Print.
Source: Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases - Category: Infectious Diseases Authors: Source Type: research
Abstract The bacterial genus, Borrelia, is comprised of vector-borne spirochete species that infect and are transmitted from multiple host species. Some Borrelia species cause highly-prevalent diseases in humans and domestic animals. Evolutionary, ecological, and molecular research on many Borrelia species have resulted in tremendous progress toward understanding the biology and natural history of these species. Yet, many outstanding questions, such as how Borrelia populations will be impacted by climate and land-use change, will require an interdisciplinary approach. The evolutionary ecology research framework in...
Source: Infection, Genetics and Evolution - Category: Genetics & Stem Cells Authors: Tags: Infect Genet Evol Source Type: research
Infection with tick borne Borrelia Burgdorferi (Lyme disease) can without treatment rarely develop into a chronic phase. Secondary Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus (sNPH) based on chronic infection with Borrelia ...
Source: BMC Neurology - Category: Neurology Authors: Tags: Case report Source Type: research
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Source: Annals of Agricultural and Environmental Medicine : AAEM - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tags: Ann Agric Environ Med Source Type: research
Abstract Companion animals can become infected with tick-borne diseases (TBDs) and can become hosts of transmission to humans, thereby damaging human health. To clarify whether companion animals are infested by ticks harboring TBD pathogens in humans, we detected TBD pathogens in ticks collected from dogs and cats brought to animal hospitals in Yamagata Prefecture, Japan. Investigation of 164 adult ticks collected from 88 dogs and 41 cats during March-July 2018 revealed the predominant tick species as Ixodes ovatus (n = 95, 57.9%), followed by Ixodes nipponensis (37, 22.6%) and Haemaphysalis flava (10, 6.1%). The ...
Source: Japanese Journal of Infectious Diseases - Category: Infectious Diseases Authors: Tags: Jpn J Infect Dis Source Type: research
Date: Friday, 08 21, 2020; Speaker: Travis Bourret, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Medical Microbiology&Immunology, Creighton University School of Medicine; Building: Online - Webex, twitter, Facebook Live; URL:
Source: NIH Calendar of Events - Category: American Health Source Type: events
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