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Prevention of Borrelia burgdorferi transmission in guinea pigs by tick immunity.

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Abstract

We examined the effect of repeated infestation of guinea pigs with Ixodes scapularis on the capacity of ticks to transmit Borrelia burgdorferi infection. Repeated challenges with nymphs or larvae lead to a reduction in duration of nymphal tick attachment and weight of recovered ticks consistent with the development of tick immunity. Only one of 18 I. scapularis-immune guinea pigs challenged with B. burgdorferi-infected nymphal ticks became infected, whereas 10 of 18 naive guinea pigs similarly challenged became infected. We conclude that tick immunity interferes with borrelial transmission.

Am J Trop Med Hyg. 1998 Jun;58(6):780-5. Research Support, U.S. Gov’t, P.H.S.

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