To survey the prevalence of tick-borne known and putative pathogens, we tested 982 individual adult and nymphal I. pacificus ticks collected throughout California between 2007 and 2009 using a broad-range PCR and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (PCR/ESI-MS) assay designed to detect a wide range of tick-borne microorganisms. Overall, 1.4% of the ticks were found to be infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, 2.0% were infected with Borrelia miyamotoi and 0.3% were infected with Anaplasma phagocytophilum. In addition, 3.0% were infected with Babesia odocoilei. About 1.2% of the ticks were co-infected with more than one pathogen or putative pathogen. Health Canada is reporting a more than 300% increase in reported cases in Canada since 2009.
Antibiotics such as doxycycline*, amoxicillin, cefuroxime, and ceftriaxone can be used to treat Lyme disease if an infection develops. For people who require treatment for a mild infection associated with Lyme disease, the doctor usually prescribes an oral antibiotic for 2 to 4 weeks to cure the infection. For people who require treatment for more severe infections doctor usually prescribes an intravenous (given through the vein) antibiotic.
The objective of this study was to identify the tick species parasitizing Richardson's ground squirrels (Spermophilus richardsonii) in southern Saskatchewan (Canada). Morphological examination of the adult ticks revealed the presence of three tick species, Ixodes sculptus, Ixodes kingi and Dermacentor andersoni. PCR-based single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) and DNA sequence analyses of a portion of the mitochondrial (mt) 16S rRNA gene were used to determine their species identity. The results showed that each tick species had a unique set of SSCP profiles and DNA sequences using this mt marker. The species identity of larval and nymphal ticks was determined based on a comparison of these profiles and sequences with those of morphologically-identified adults.