Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New tick-borne disease discovered in Gothenburg

06.12.2011
Researchers at the University of Gothenburg’s Sahlgrenska Academy have discovered a brand new tick-borne infection. Since the discovery, eight cases have been described around the world, three of them in the Gothenburg area, Sweden.

In July 2009 a 77-year-old man from western Sweden was out kayaking when he went down with acute diarrhea, fever and temporary loss of consciousness. He was taken to hospital where it was found that he was also suffering with deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Following treatment with antibiotics, he was discharged some days later with an anticoagulant to thin his blood. However, the man – who had an impaired immune system – went down with a fever again.

Brand new infection

Over the following months the 77-year-old was admitted as an emergency case on several occasions, but despite repeated attempts to find a microbe, and repeated doses of antibiotics, the fever returned. Finally the patient’s blood underwent special analysis to look for bacterial DNA – and that produced results. The findings matched a bacterium in an online gene bank and the results were a sensation: the man had contracted a brand new infection in humans which had never been described in the world before.

Never before seen in Sweden

The man’s blood contained DNA that derived with 100% certainty from the bacterium Neoehrlichia mikurensis. This bacterium was identified for the first time in Japan in 2004 in rats and ticks but had never before been seen in Sweden in ticks, rodents or humans.

Research published

Christine Wennerås, a doctor and researcher at the Department of Infectious Diseases and the Department of Haematology and Coagulation at the University of Gothenburg’s Sahlgrenska Academy, has been studying the case since it first came to light. Last year she was able, for the first time, to describe the newly discovered disease in a scientific article published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology.

“Since our discovery the bacterium has been reported in eight cases around the world, three of them in Gothenburg,” says Wennerås.

Causes DVT

All three of the Gothenburg cases involved patients with an impaired immune system, all of whom became ill during the summer months when ticks are most active.

“The nasty thing about this infection is that it causes DVT, at least in people with an impaired immune system,” says Wennerås. “This can be life-threatening. Fortunately, the infection can be treated successfully with antibiotics.

Spreads from mammals

“If the newly discovered bacterium is similar to those we already know, it has presumably spread from wild mammals to people via ticks, and it is unlikely that it can be passed on from person to person.”

The mikurensis in the bacterium’s name comes from the Japanese island of Mikura, where it was first discovered.

Bibliographic data
Journal: J Clin Microbiol. 2010 May; 48(5): 1956–1959.
Published online 2010 March 10. doi: 10.1128/JCM.02423-09
Title: First Case of Human “Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis” Infection in a Febrile Patient with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

Author: Christina Welinder-Olsson, Eva Kjellin, Krista Vaht, Stefan Jacobsson and Christine Wennerås

For more information, please contact: Christine Wennerås, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg
Mobile: +46 (0)708 656 167
Telephone: +46 (0)31 342 4784
E-mail: christine.wenneras@microbio.gu.se

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://www.gu.se
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2863919/?tool=pubmed

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Topologische Quantenchemie
21.07.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemische Physik fester Stoffe

nachricht Topological Quantum Chemistry
21.07.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemische Physik fester Stoffe

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA looks to solar eclipse to help understand Earth's energy system

21.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

Stanford researchers develop a new type of soft, growing robot

21.07.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Vortex photons from electrons in circular motion

21.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>