Borrelia

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Borrelia

A genus of spirochetes that have a unique genome composed of a linear chromosome and numerous linear and circular plasmids. Borreliae are motile, helical organisms with 4–30 uneven, irregular coils, and are 5–25 micrometers long and 0.2–0.5 μm wide. All borreliae are arthropod-borne. Of the 24 recognized species, 21 cause relapsing fever and similar diseases in human and rodent hosts; two are responsible for infections in ruminants and horses; and the remaining one, for borreliosis in birds. See Bacteria

The borreliae of human relapsing fevers are transmitted by the body louse or by a large variety of soft-shelled ticks of the genus Ornithodoros. The species B. burgdorferi, the etiologic agent of Lyme disease and related disorders, is transmitted by ticks of the genus Ixodes. Borrelia anserina, which causes spirochetosis in chickens and other birds, is propagated by ticks of the genus Argas. Various species of ixodid ticks are responsible for transmitting B. theileri among cattle, horses, and sheep. Borrelia coriaceae, isolated from O. coriaceus, is the putative cause of epizootic bovine abortion in the western United States.

Polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of spirochetes has shown that the outer surface of the microorganisms contains numerous variable lipoproteins of which at least two are abundant. The antigenic variability is well known for the relapsing fever borreliae. A switch in the major outer-surface proteins leads to recurrent spirochetemias. Tetracyclines, penicillins, and doxycycline are the most effective antibiotics for treatment of spirochetes. Two vaccines consisting of recombinant B. burgdorferi have been evaluated in subjects of risk for Lyme disease. Both proved safe and effective in the prevention of this disease. See Antibiotic, Medical bacteriology

McGraw-Hill Concise Encyclopedia of Bioscience. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Borrelia

[bə′rel·ē·ə]
(microbiology)
A genus of bacteria in the family Spirochaetaceae; helical cells with uneven coils and parallel fibrils coiled around the cell body for locomotion; many species cause relapsing fever in humans.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Successful in vitro cultivation of Borrelia duttonii and its comparison with Borrelia recurrentis. Int J Syst Bacteriol.
Borrelia recurrentis characterization and comparison with relapsing-fever, Lyme-associated, and other Borrelia spp.
Successful in-vitro cultivation of Borrelia recurrentis. Lancet.
The body louse has been demonstrated to be the vector of three human pathogens: Rickettsia prowazekii, the agent of epidemic typhus; Bartonella quintana, the agent of trench fever; and Borrelia recurrentis, the agent of louseborne recurrent fever (1).
Using polymerase chain reaction and sequencing, we investigated the prevalence of Rickettsia prowazekii, Bartonella quintana, and Borrelia recurrentis in 841 body lice collected from various countries.
The body louse, Pediculus humanus corporis, is the vector of three human pathogens: Rickettsia prowazekii, the agent of epidemic typhus; Borrelia recurrentis, the agent of relapsing fever; and Bartonella quintana, the agent of trench fever, bacillary angiomatosis, endocarditis, chronic bacteremia, and chronic lymphadenopathy (1).
No PCR products were obtained for any of the lice when primer pair Bfl-Brl was used, indicating lack of infections with Borrelia recurrentis.
quintana, and relapsing fever caused by Borrelia recurrentis (1-3).