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Int J Parasitol. 1991 Feb;21(1):109-11.

Vector competence of the Australian paralysis tick, Ixodes holocyclus, for the Lyme disease spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi.

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  • 1Division of Vector-borne Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control, Ft Collins, CO 80522.


Clinical and serologic evidence of Lyme disease in Australia, including the typical rash, erythema migrans, has been reported. The vector tick transmitting Borrelia burgdorferi in Australia, however, has not been determined. The Australian paralysis tick, Ixodes holocyclus, is a logical candidate vector of the Lyme disease spirochete in Australia; therefore, we tested the ability of I. holocyclus to acquire and maintain a North American isolate of B. burgdorferi. Larval I. holocyclus ingested spirochetes, but none of 84 derived nymphs were infected. These experiments should be repeated with Australian strains of spirochetes.

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