Lyme activists pounce as Borrelia found in echidna ticks

THE discovery of a novel species of Borrelia in ticks on echidnas is exciting Lyme disease activists in Australia but its pathogenic potential is so far unknown.

Researchers at Perth’s Murdoch University have published the discovery of the novel species, related to relapsing fever spirochaetes, after identifying it in 38 out of 97 ticks pulled from echidnas.

Australia does not have Borrelia burgdorferi, the species which cause Lyme disease in the US and Europe but does have three other kinds of borreliae.

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