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Hereditas. 2001;134(3):195-9.

Phylogeographic relationships of Ixodes uriae (Acari: Ixodidae) and their significance to transequatorial dispersal of Borrelia garinii.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Umeå University, SE-901 87 Umeå, Sweden.


The seabird tick Ixodes uriae (Acari: Ixodidae) has a bi- and circumpolar distribution and is commonly infected with Lyme disease Borrelia. Identical Borrelia flagellin gene sequences have been detected in I. uriae from both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, suggesting a transequatorial transport of Borrelia. Parsimony analysis of the internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) and a part of 16S rDNA of I. uriae from the Northern and Southern Hemispheres indicated that northern and southern I. uriae might be reproductively separated. We hypothesize that Borrelia is probably not dispersed from one hemisphere to the other by ticks attached to seabirds.

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