What exactly is the connection between a tick bite and lyme disease? While we’re not sure exactly where and when the disease originated, we do know a lot about how it works, its signs, its symptoms in humans and dogs, how it’s spread and its treatment.
SICK is a new series that looks at how diseases actually work inside our body. We’ll be visiting medical centers and talking to top researchers and doctors to uncover the mysteries of viruses, bacteria, fungi and our own immune system. Come back every Tuesday for a new episode and let us know in the comments which diseases you think we should cover next.
History of Lyme Disease
“Ticks and Lyme disease have been around for thousands of years. In fact, a recent autopsy on a 5,300-year-old mummy indicated the presence of the bacteria which causes Lyme disease. A German physician, Alfred Buchwald, first described the chronic skin rash, or erythema migrans, of what is now known to be Lyme disease more than 130 years ago. However, Lyme disease was only recognized in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s. And the bacteria that causes it – Borrelia burgdorferi – wasn’t officially classified until 1981.”
Tickborne diseases of the United States
Lyme Disease Vaccines
“Two large pharmaceutical companies have devoted considerable effort to developing a vaccine for Lyme disease, but there are no vaccines for humans available in the United States today.”
Lyme disease: the promise of Big Data, companion diagnostics and precision medicine
“The use of Big Data registries, companion diagnostics and precision medicine will revolutionize the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease.”
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