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Biotecnología Aplicada

On-line version ISSN 1027-2852


RODRIGUEZ, Islay et al. Evidences of autochthonous infection by Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato in Cuba. Biotecnol Apl [online]. 2012, vol.29, n.3, pp.190-193. ISSN 1027-2852.

Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato is the causative agent of Lyme disease, borreliosis not reported in Cuba but clinical and epidemiological suspicions exist since the 1980's, and there were no microbiological testing for confirmation. This led to perform a series of researches to provide scientific evidences about the presence of this agent in the country, including the evaluation and implementation of microbiological methods for the detection of this spirochete, confirmation of infection in clinical samples from patients with clinical and epidemiological suspicions, the estimated seroprevalence of antibodies against this agent in a population at risk and the molecular detection of borrelia in ticks of veterinary and medical importance. The microbiological tools evaluated (culture medium modified, methods of extracting genetic material from ticks for subsequent detection of B. burgdorferi sensu lato by molecular testing, and analytical sensitivity of two sets of primers) and implemented (specific serological tests) strengthened the IPK analytical capacity with novel methods for future researches. We found specific serological evidences of autochthonous infection by this organism in samples of individuals with clinical and epidemiological suspicion, and those exposed to tick bites. Genetic material of B. burgdorferi sensu lato was undetected in the analyzed ticks, what does not rule them out as potential carriers of the agent. In this paper we show evidence highly suggestive of infection with B. burgdorferi sensu lato and it is the first of its kind in the country.

Keywords : Borrelia burgdorferi; Borrelia; infection; tick; Cuba.

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