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Borrelia burgdorferi seeks vectors J.H. (Han) van der Kolk To cite this article: J.H. (Han) van der Kolk (2014) Borrelia burgdorferi seeks vectors, Veterinary Quarterly, 34:3, 119-119, DOI: 10.1080/01652176.2014.972609 To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01652176.2014.972609
Published online: 15 Dec 2014.
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Date: 05 November 2015, At: 21:33
Veterinary Quarterly, 2014 Vol. 34, No. 3, 119, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01652176.2014.972609
EDITORIAL Borrelia burgdorferi seeks vectors
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Dear reader, In this issue of Veterinary Quarterly, nephrectomy following progressive and severe destruction of the (predominantly right) renal parenchyma in dogs due to Dioctophyma renale is described. D. renale, a large nematode, also known as giant kidney worm, is distributed worldwide. Infestation in man is rare, but might also result in kidney destruction (Fernando 1983). However, D. renale is more likely to develop in a dog after ingesting its infected paratenic hosts, including fishes and frogs (Liu 2012). The report by Mesquita et al. in this issue not only provides us with valuable information regarding preoperative and postoperative evaluation regarding right nephrectomy due to D. renale in dogs, but also emphasizes the role of vectors. Not only helminths use vectors. The role of ticks (Ixodes sp.) is well known as the main vector of Borrelia burgdorferi being the causative agent of Lyme disease. The Lyme disease spirochaete contains 21 plasmids and this is by far the largest number of plasmids found in any known bacterium. Furthermore, the combination of genetic complexity, intracellular localization, immune evasion, and autoregulation makes the Lyme disease spirochaete a formidable infectious agent (Qiu et al. 2004; Stricker et al. 2005). Of note, isolation of the spirochaete Borrelia afzelii from the (overwintering) mosquito Aedes vexans in the Czech Republic has been documented (Halouzka et al. 1998; Halouzka et al. 1999). From the same paper it has been stated that “the potential role of mosquitoes in the epidemiology of Lyme borreliosis should be investigated”. In another study, also from the Czech Republic, Borrelian positivity of Culex pipiens pipiens larvae was 1.14% based on single-tube nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method. From these results it had been concluded that a low percentage Borreliae can be also found in mosquito larvae and are likely to survive into imago stage (Zakovska et al. 2002), thereby illustrating the smartness of the Lyme disease spirochaete. The role of the Lyme disease spirochaete in veterinary medicine needs to be further substantiated. Based on an infection model, the disease seems more prominent in the dog (Chang et al. 2001) than in the horse (Chang et al. 2000). In accord, only 8% of horses with a suspicion of infection with B. burgdorferi turned out to be seropositive
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based on non-random sampling compared to 23% in dogs (Wagner and Erb 2012). The most likely symptoms in the equine species are neuroborreliosis and anterior uveitis. However, like in human medicine, the diagnosis in veterinary medicine remains a challenge as well. J.H. (Han) van der Kolk Vetsuisse Faculty, Swiss Institute for Equine Medicine (ISME), University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland Email: [email protected]
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