Tags: lyme disease | second | close-cousin | bacteria

Lyme Disease Can Be Caused by a Second Close-Cousin Bacteria

Image: Lyme Disease Can Be Caused by a Second Close-Cousin Bacteria

A deer tick, or blacklegged tick, rests on a blade of grass. Its bite can transmit Lyme disease. (REUTERS/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Handout via Reuters)

By    |   Tuesday, 09 Feb 2016 06:56 AM

Lyme disease can be caused a second close-cousin bacteria, the CDC announced on Monday along with the Mayo Clinic and health officials from three states, but you still get the affliction the same way: tick bites.

The new findings about a second bacteria -- provisionally called Borrelia mayonii -- that causes Lyme disease was first published in the medical journal Lancet Infectious Diseases on Friday. Until the discovery, it was believed the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi only caused Lyme disease in North America, said a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention news release.

Mayo Clinic scientists first discovered the possibility of a second bacteria when lab tests from six people believed to have Lyme disease had unexpected results. Additional tests from the Mayo and the CDC uncovered the new bacteria.

Dr. Bobbi Pritt, director of Mayo Clinic's clinical parasitology laboratory, said in a different news release that researchers believe that the organism may have recently emerged in the upper Midwestern United States.

"Using a laboratory-developed test with a method called 'melting temperature analysis,' we detected six specimens that produced a PCR result that was clearly different from B. burgdorferi," said Pritt.

"Mayo Medical Laboratories, the reference laboratory at Mayo, has tested more than 100,000 patient samples from all 50 states over the past decade using our PCR assay, but we've only recently detected evidence of B. mayonii."

The CDC said Borrelia mayonii is closely related to Borrelia burgdorferi. The researchers think that the B. mayonii is transmitted to humans through a bite from an infected blacklegged, or deer tick, like the B. burgdorferi.

B. mayonii has been found in ticks collected in at least two counties in northwestern Wisconsin.

"This discovery adds another important piece of information to the complex picture of tickborne diseases in the United States," said Dr. Jeannine Petersen, a CDC microbiologist.

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Lyme disease can be caused a second close-cousin bacteria, the CDC announced on Monday along with the Mayo Clinic and health officials from three states, but you still get the affliction the same way: tick bites.
lyme disease, second, close-cousin, bacteria
305
2016-56-09
Tuesday, 09 Feb 2016 06:56 AM
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