Voici les éléments 1 - 2 sur 2
- PublicationAccès libreCross-immunity and community structure of a multiple-strain pathogen in the tick vectorMany vector-borne pathogens consist of multiple strains that circulate in both the vertebrate host and the arthropod vector. Characterization of the community of pathogen strains in the arthropod vector is therefore important for understanding the epidemiology of mixed vector-borne infections. Borrelia afzelii and B. garinii are two species of tick-borne bacteria that cause Lyme disease in humans. These two sympatric pathogens use the same tick, Ixodes ricinus, but are adapted to different classes of vertebrate hosts. Both Borrelia species consist of multiple strains that are classified using the highly polymorphic ospC gene. Vertebrate cross-immunity against the OspC antigen is predicted to structure the community of multiple-strain Borrelia pathogens. Borrelia isolates were cultured from field-collected I. ricinus ticks over a period spanning 11 years. The Borrelia species of each isolate was identified using a reverse line blot (RLB) assay. Deep sequencing was used to characterize the ospC communities of 190 B. afzelii isolates and 193 B. garinii isolates. Infections with multiple ospC strains were common in ticks, but vertebrate cross-immunity did not influence the strain structure in the tick vector. The pattern of genetic variation at the ospC locus suggested that vertebrate cross-immunity exerts strong selection against intermediately divergent ospC alleles. Deep sequencing found that more than 50% of our isolates contained exotic ospC alleles derived from other Borrelia species. Two alternative explanations for these exotic ospC alleles are cryptic coinfections that were not detected by the RLB assay or horizontal transfer of the ospC gene between Borrelia species.
- PublicationAccès libreSerological signature of tick-borne pathogens in Scandinavian brown bears over two decadesBackground: Anthropogenic disturbances are changing the geographic distribution of ticks and tick-borne diseases. Over the last few decades, the tick Ixodes ricinus has expanded its range and abundance considerably in northern Europe. Concurrently, the incidence of tick-borne diseases, such as Lyme borreliosis and tick-borne encephalitis, has increased in the human populations of the Scandinavian countries. Methods: Wildlife populations can serve as sentinels for changes in the distribution of tick-borne diseases. We used serum samples from a long-term study on the Scandinavian brown bear, Ursus arctos, and standard immunological methods to test whether exposure to Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, the causative agent of Lyme borreliosis, and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) had increased over time. Bears had been sampled over a period of 18 years (1995-2012) from a southern area, where Ixodes ricinus ticks are present, and a northern area where ticks are uncommon or absent. Results: Bears had high levels of IgG antibodies against B. burgdorferi sensu lato but not TBEV. Bears at the southern area had higher values of anti-Borrelia IgG antibodies than bears at the northern area. Over the duration of the study, the value of anti-Borrelia IgG antibodies increased in the southern area but not the northern area. Anti-Borrelia IgG antibodies increased with the age of the bear but declined in the oldest age classes. Conclusions: Our study is consistent with the view that ticks and tick-borne pathogens are expanding their abundance and prevalence in Scandinavia. Long-term serological monitoring of large mammals can provide insight into how anthropogenic disturbances are changing the distribution of ticks and tick-borne diseases.