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J Clin Microbiol. 2000 Apr;38(4):1648-50.

Comparison of the yields of blood cultures using serum or plasma from patients with early Lyme disease.

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  • 1Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, New York Medical College, Valhalla, New York 10595, USA. Gary_Wormser@NYMC.EDU


In an initial experiment, culture-grown Borrelia burgdorferi was added to freshly collected uninfected human blood. This in vitro study demonstrated that more spirochetes were distributed into the plasma than into the serum fraction. In a subsequent clinical study, B. burgdorferi was recovered from plasma cultures of approximately 50% of 42 patients with early Lyme disease associated with erythema migrans. The rate of recovery from plasma cultures was significantly greater than that from serum cultures (P < 0.001).

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