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1 March 2001 Infection of Ixodes scapularis (Acari: Ixodidae) with Borrelia burgdorferi Using a New Artificial Feeding Technique
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Abstract

To study interactions between Ixodes scapularis (Say) and Borrelia burgdorferi, an artificial feeding system was refined to allow controlled manipulation of single variables. The feeding system uses a mouse skin mounted on a water-jacketed glass membrane feeder. I. scapularis were infected using either BSK-H-cultured B. burgdorferi spirochetes or a B. burgdorferi-infected mouse skin as the source of spirochetes. Sixty-six percent of nymphs successfully fed to repletion using the artificial feeding systems with at least 75% of nymphs becoming infected with B. burgdorferi. Strain B31 B. burgdorferi spirochetes from passages 2–17 were equally infectious to nymphal ticks. At concentrations of one spirochete per microliter, 12% of nymphs acquired infection and 14 and 100 spirochetes per microliter resulted in 50 and 100% infection rates, respectively. Eighty-nine percent of nymphs fed by artificial feeding molted to the adult stage. When subsequently fed as adults, these I. scapularis successfully transmitted infectious B. burgdorferi spirochetes to mice.

Thomas R. Burkot, Christine M. Happ, Marc C. Dolan, and Gary O. Maupin "Infection of Ixodes scapularis (Acari: Ixodidae) with Borrelia burgdorferi Using a New Artificial Feeding Technique," Journal of Medical Entomology 38(2), 167-171, (1 March 2001). https://doi.org/10.1603/0022-2585-38.2.167
Received: 17 May 2000; Accepted: 1 September 2000; Published: 1 March 2001
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