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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014, 11(2), 1661-1672; doi:10.3390/ijerph110201661

A Seventeen-Year Epidemiological Surveillance Study of Borrelia burgdorferi Infections in Two Provinces of Northern Spain

1,* , 1
1 Department of Biomedicine and Biotecnology, Alcalá University, 28871 Alcalá de Henares, Spain 2 Territorial Health Service and Social Welfare of the Junta de Castilla y León, 47003 Valladolid, Spain 3 Department of Parasitology, Salamanca University, 37008 Salamanca, Spain 4 Centre for Vectors and Infectious Diseases Research, Instituto Nacional de Saúde Dr. Ricardo Jorge (National Institute of Health), 2965-575 Aguas de Moura, Portugal
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 December 2013 / Revised: 15 January 2014 / Accepted: 26 January 2014 / Published: 30 January 2014
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This paper reports a 17-year seroepidemiological surveillance study of Borrelia burgdorferi infection, performed with the aim of improving our knowledge of the epidemiology of this pathogen. Serum samples (1,179) from patients (623, stratified with respect to age, sex, season, area of residence and occupation) bitten by ticks in two regions of northern Spain were IFA-tested for B. burgdorferi antibodies. Positive results were confirmed by western blotting. Antibodies specific for B. burgdorferi were found in 13.3% of the patients; 7.8% were IgM positive, 9.6% were IgG positive, and 4.33% were both IgM and IgG positive. Five species of ticks were identified in the seropositive patients: Dermacentor marginatus (41.17% of such patients) Dermacentor reticulatus (11.76%), Rhiphicephalus sanguineus (17.64%), Rhiphicephalus turanicus (5.88%) and Ixodes ricinus (23.52%). B. burgdorferi DNA was sought by PCR in ticks when available. One tick, a D. reticulatus male, was found carrying the pathogen. The seroprevalence found was similar to the previously demonstrated in similar studies in Spain and other European countries.
Keywords: Lyme disease; epidemiology; public health Lyme disease; epidemiology; public health
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Lledó, L.; Gegúndez, M.I.; Giménez-Pardo, C.; Álamo, R.; Fernández-Soto, P.; Nuncio, M.S.; Saz, J.V. A Seventeen-Year Epidemiological Surveillance Study of Borrelia burgdorferi Infections in Two Provinces of Northern Spain. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014, 11, 1661-1672.

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