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Thursday, May 19, 2011

[AlternativeAnswers] The expanding Lyme Borrelia complex--clinical significance of genomic species?


Clin Microbiol Infect. 2011 Apr;17(4):487-93. doi:

The expanding Lyme Borrelia complex--clinical significance of genomic

Stanek G, Reiter M.


Institute for Hygiene and Applied Immunology, Medical University of
Vienna, Vienna, Austria. _gerold.stanek@meduniwien.ac.at_

Ten years after the discovery of spirochaetes as agents of Lyme disease
in 1982 in the USA, three genomic species had diverged from the
phenotypically heterogeneous strains of Borrelia burgdorferi isolated in
North America and Europe: Borrelia afzelii, B. burgdorferi sensu stricto
(further B. burgdorferi), and Borrelia garinii. Whereas B. burgdorferi
remained the only human pathogen in North America, all three species are
aetiological agents of Lyme borreliosis in Europe. Another seven
genospecies were described in the 1990s, including species from Asia
(Borrelia japonica, Borrelia turdi, and B. tanukii), North America
(Borrelia andersonii), Europe (Borrelia lusitaniae and Borrelia
valaisiana), and from Europe and Asia (Borrelia bissettii). Another
eight species were delineated in the years up to 2010: Borrelia sinica
(Asia), Borrelia spielmanii (Europe), Borrelia yangtze (Asia), Borrelia
californiensis, Borrelia americana, Borrelia carolinensis (North
America), Borrelia bavariensis (Europe), and Borrelia kurtenbachii
(North America). Of these 18 genomic species B. afzelii, B. burgdorferi
and B. garinii are the confirmed agents of localized, disseminated and
chronic manifestations of Lyme borreliosis, whereas B. spielmanii has
been detected in early skin disease, and B. bissettii and B. valaisiana
have been detected in specimens from single cases of Lyme borreliosis.
The clinical role of B. lusitaniae remains to be substantiated.

© 2011 The Authors. Clinical Microbiology and Infection © 2011 European
Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.

[PubMed - in process]

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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