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Vaccine. 2006 Mar 10;24(11):1949-57. Epub 2005 Nov 4.

Protective efficacy of an oral vaccine to reduce carriage of Borrelia burgdorferi (strain N40) in mouse and tick reservoirs.

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Tufts-New England Medical Center, Tupper Research Institute, Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Box 41, 750 Washington St., Boston, MA 02111, USA.


Lyme disease is caused by the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi, which is transmitted through the bite of infected Ixodes ticks. Vaccination of mice with outer surface protein A (OspA) of B. burgdorferi has been shown to both protect mice against B. burgdorferi infection and reduce carriage of the organism in feeding ticks. Here we report the development of a murine-targeted OspA vaccine utilizing Vaccinia virus to interrupt transmission of disease in the reservoir hosts, thus reducing incidence of human disease. Oral vaccination of mice with a single dose of Vaccinia expressing OspA resulted in high antibody titers to OspA, 100% protection of vaccinated mice from infection with B. burgdorferi, and significant clearance of B. burgdorferi from infected ticks fed on vaccinated animals. The results indicate the vaccine is effective and may provide a manner to reduce incidence of Lyme disease.

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