Laboratory of Zoonotic Pathogens

South Browning, MT, United States

Laboratory of Zoonotic Pathogens

South Browning, MT, United States

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Wack A.N.,Maryland Zoo in Baltimore | Holland C.J.,Protatek Reference Laboratory | Lopez J.E.,Laboratory of Zoonotic Pathogens | Lopez J.E.,Baylor College of Medicine | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine | Year: 2015

An 18-yr-old female captive-born chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) presented with an intermittent history of inappetence, lethargy, and lower limb stiffness. No notable abnormalities were found on exam or complete blood cell count and serum biochemistry analysis. Serologic testing was strongly positive via indirect fluorescent antibody testing and Western blot for Borrelia burgdorferi. Treatment with doxycycline was initiated, and a clinical response was seen within 1 wk. Convalescent serum exhibited an eightfold increase in titer. Serologic testing was performed on several conspecifics with banked serum; while some low positive titers were present and presumed indicative of past exposure, no titer was elevated to the extent of the affected chimpanzee during its course of disease. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of suspected Lyme borreliosis in a great ape species, and the case originates from an area of the United States with a high incidence of human borreliosis. © 2015 American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.


PubMed | Laboratory of Zoonotic Pathogens
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Clinical and vaccine immunology : CVI | Year: 2010

In a previous immunoproteome analysis of Borrelia hermsii, candidate antigens that bound IgM antibodies from mice and patients infected with relapsing fever spirochetes were identified. One candidate that was identified is a hypothetical protein with a molecular mass of 57 kDa that we have designated Borrelia immunogenic protein A (BipA). This protein was further investigated as a potential diagnostic antigen for B. hermsii given that it is absent from the Borrelia burgdorferi genome. The bipA locus was amplified and sequenced from 39 isolates of B. hermsii that had been acquired from western North America. bipA was also expressed as a recombinant fusion protein. Serum samples from mice and patients infected with B. hermsii or B. burgdorferi were used to confirm the immunogenicity of the recombinant protein in patients infected with relapsing fever spirochetes. Lastly, in silico and experimental analysis indicated that BipA is a surface-exposed lipoprotein in B. hermsii. These findings enhance the capabilities of diagnosing infection with relapsing fever spirochetes.

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