Lyme: Transmitted People-to-People?

If the Lyme Disease bacterium is a spirochete and the syphilis bacterium is a spirochete (they are “cousins”), then shouldn’t Lyme be sexually transmitted too? Well, a 2014 study indicates that it is.

Control subjects who were asymptomatic and seronegative for Bb had no detectable spirochetes in genital secretions by PCR analysis. In contrast, spirochetes were observed in cultures of genital secretions from 11 of 13 subjects diagnosed with Lyme disease, and motile spirochetes were detected in genital culture concentrates from 12 of 13 Lyme disease patients using light and darkfield microscopy.

Culture and identification of Borrelia spirochetes in human vaginal and seminal secretions

Marianne J. Middelveen (1), Jennie Burke (2), Eva Sapi (3), Cheryl Bandoski (3), Katherine R. Filush (3), Yean Wang (2), Agustin Franco (2), Arun Timmaraju (3), Hilary A. Schlinger (1), Peter J. Mayne (1), Raphael B. Stricker (1)

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