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Methods Mol Biol. 2017;1616:155-170. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-7037-7_10.

Detection and Differentiation of Lyme Spirochetes and Other Tick-Borne Pathogens from Blood Using Real-Time PCR with Molecular Beacons.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School, 225 Warren Street, Newark, NJ, 07103-3535, USA.
2
AI Biosciences, Inc., 1902 Pinon Drive, Suite C, College Station, TX, 77845-5816, USA.
3
Department of Microbiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School, 225 Warren Street, Newark, NJ, 07103-3535, USA. Parveeni@njms.rutgers.edu.

Abstract

Real-time PCR assays have recently been implemented in diagnostics for many bacterial pathogens, allowing rapid and accurate detection, which ultimately results in improved clinical intervention. Here, we describe a sensitive method of detection for three common tick-borne pathogens Borrelia burgdorferi, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, and Babesia microti since coinfections with these pathogens have started occurring with increasing frequency over the last several years in both North America and Europe. A shared geographic region, the same tick vectors, and similar transmission cycle all favor simultaneous transmission of these three tick-borne pathogens. Furthermore, early symptoms of the diseases are often similar and somewhat nonspecific leading to poor clinical identification. The multiplex real-time PCR assay we describe here utilizes gene-specific primers, molecular beacon probes tagged with different fluorophores, and optimized PCR conditions to detect even small amounts of specific pathogen DNA without interference. Application of this detection method will offer better diagnostics for acute and persistent infection compared to the two-tier serological tests that are currently approved in North America and Europe, which do not necessarily detect active infection.

KEYWORDS:

Anaplasma phagocytophilium; Anaplasmosis; Babesia microti; Babesiosis; Borrelia burgdorferi; Lyme disease; Molecular beacons; Mutliplex assay; Real-time PCR; Tick-borne pathogens

PMID:
28600768
DOI:
10.1007/978-1-4939-7037-7_10
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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