Abstract: [animal research] Evaluation of a Canine C6 ELISA Lyme Disease Test for the Determination of the Infection Status of Cats Naturally Exposed to Borrelia burgdorferi

Vet Ther. 2003 Summer;4(2):172-7.  Levy SA, O'Connor TP, Hanscom JL, Shields P.  Durham Veterinary Hospital PC, 178 Parmelee Hill Road, Durham, CT, 06422, USA.

The efficacy of a commercially available in-office kit (SNAP 3Dx, IDEXX Laboratories) for detection of antibodies directed against an invariable region (IR6) of the B. burgdorferi surface protein VlsE (Vmp-like sequence, Expressed), a surface antigen of the spirochete recognized during active infection has been evaluated in dogs.

The present study was conducted to determine whether this in-office test could be useful for detection of antibodies to B. burgdorferi in cats. Cats owned by clients of a veterinary hospital located in an area hyperendemic for Lyme disease were included in the study. When possible, cats with an outdoor lifestyle, bite wounds, or current tick infestation were recruited for the study to help ensure that animals with a likelihood of exposure to natural infection by B. burgdorferi would be included in the test group.

Of the 24 cats tested, 17 samples were positive for antibodies to B. burgdorferi by the C6 ELISA kit. For all 17 of these samples, a duplicate sample tested by immunofluorescent assay (IFA) was in agreement with the ELISA. Five samples were negative by both assays. Two samples that were negative by the C6 ELISA test had low IFA titers (1:100). One of these two discrepant samples was negative and one was positive for antibodies to B. burgdorferi by the Western blot test.

It was concluded that the C6 ELISA test performed with good agreement with the IFA and Western blot tests for detection of antibody to B. burgdorferi in the majority of cats tested. The test offers the advantages of producing a result rapidly (approximately 8 minutes), and it requires only two drops of serum, plasma, or whole blood.

PMID: 14506593 [PubMed – in process]

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