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SDS-PAGE and Western immunoblot profiles have been determined for different strains of Borrelia burgdorferi. Major proteins of 60 kDa, 41 kDa corresponding to flagellin, 34-36 kDa and 30-31 kDa corresponding to OspB and OspA respectively, and 18-20 kDa corresponding to ‘pC’ fractions were detected. A "rough" lipopolysaccharide which we called lipooligosaccharide (LOS) of 8-11 kDa appeared to be present, being detected by specific silver staining, as in crude Borrelia lysates as in proteinase K digested Borrelia strains, quite similar in shape among the different strains examined. The LOS reacted in Western blotting with immune anti-B. burgdorferi rabbit serum and also with sera collected from humans affected by
Lyme borreliosis. The LOS did not react with sera positive for syphilis or leptospirosis, and their immunological specificity is discussed.