Antibodies to Borrelia burgdorferi OspA, OspC, OspF, and C6 Antigens as Markers for Early and Late Infection in Dogs

Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA.
Clinical and vaccine Immunology: CVI (Impact Factor: 2.47). 02/2012; 19(4):527-35. DOI: 10.1128/CVI.05653-11
Source: PubMed


Lyme disease in the United States is caused by Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto, which is transmitted to mammals by infected ticks. Borrelia spirochetes differentially express immunogenic outer surface proteins (Osp). Our aim was to evaluate antibody responses to Osp antigens to aid the diagnosis of early infection and the management of Lyme disease. We analyzed antibody responses during the first 3 months after the experimental infection of dogs using a novel multiplex assay. Results were compared to those obtained with two commercial assays detecting C6 antigen. Multiplex analysis identified antibodies to OspC and C6 as early as 3 weeks postinfection (p.i.) and those to OspF by 5 weeks p.i. Antibodies to C6 and OspF increased throughout the study, while antibodies to OspC peaked between 7 and 11 weeks p.i. and declined thereafter. A short-term antibody response to OspA was observed in 3/8 experimentally infected dogs on day 21 p.i. Quant C6 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) results matched multiplex results during the first 7 weeks p.i.; however, antibody levels subsequently declined by up to 29%. Immune responses then were analyzed in sera from 125 client-owned dogs and revealed high agreement between antibodies to OspF and C6 as robust markers for infection. Results from canine patient sera supported that OspC is an early infection marker and antibodies to OspC decline over time. The onset and decline of antibody responses to B. burgdorferi Osp antigens and C6 reflect their differential expression during infection. They provide valuable tools to determine the stage of infection, treatment outcomes, and vaccination status in dogs.

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    • "test detected infection with Borrelia at the earliest on day 35 or day 49 post-infection, depending on the dog (Wagner et al. 2012). On the other hand, antibodies to C6 have been detected in the late stages of infection (>12 months) with a C6 detecting device (Wagner et al. 2012; Levy et al. 2008), and have been found to decrease significantly after specific treatment, so that at least for Borrelia the detection of C6 peptide might represent a more or less robust marker of infection. Generally, the large number of dogs included and the fact that two of the pathogens, A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi s.l., have also been reported in vector ticks, man or wild life in Poland several times support the conclusion that veterinarians should be aware of infection with these two pathogens potentially in all Polish provinces. "
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    ABSTRACT: Canine vector-borne diseases (CVBDs) have increasingly become a focus of attention in the past few years. Nevertheless, in many parts of Europe information on their occurrence is still scarce. In a large study in Poland 3,094 serum samples taken from dogs throughout all 16 Polish provinces were tested using a commercial kit for the detection of circulating antibodies against Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato and Ehrlichia canis and of Dirofilaria immitis antigen. A total of 12.31 % (381/3,094; 95 % confidence interval [CI]: 11.18-13.52 %) and 3.75 % (116/3,094; 95 % CI: 3.11-4.48 %) of the dogs were positive for A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi s.l. antibodies, respectively. Furthermore, 0.26 % (8/3,094; 95 % CI: 0.11-0.51 %) were positive for E. canis antibodies and 0.16 % (5/3,094; 95 % CI: 0.05-0.38 %) for D. immitis antigen. The highest percentages of A. phagocytophilum-positive dogs were noted in Lesser Poland, Silesia and Łódź Provinces. For B. burgdorferi s.l., the highest prevalence was recorded in Łódź Province. Co-infections with A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi s.l. were recorded in 1.71 % of all examined dogs (53/3,094; 95 % CI: 1.29-2.23 %). One dog even had a triple infection, testing positive for E. canis too. Both A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi s.l. have previously been reported in Poland and were confirmed in the present study by positive samples from all 16 provinces. Concerning E. canis and D. immitis travel history or importation cannot be excluded as factors which may have determined the occurrence of these pathogens in the relevant animals. Practitioners in Poland should be aware of the above mentioned CVBDs and of prophylactic measures to protect dogs and their owners.
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    • "In both New York and Pennsylvania , most seropositive deer were solely OspF seropositive, but deer concurrently OspC and OspF seropositive exhibited the second highest prevalence. Simultaneous detection of OspF and OspC antibodies may be observed when the animal was infected within the past few months or may occur when chronically infected deer are bitten by an infected tick within a few months of blood collection, thereby inducing production of antibodies associated with the early stage of infection (Wagner et al., 2012). The most infrequently encountered class of seropositives was concomitant OspA and OspC seropositive deer, which was not surprising; OspA production is suggestive of repeated low-level exposure to B. burgdorferi, whereas OspC production is more indicative of early infection. "
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    ABSTRACT: Borrelia burgdorferi differentially exhibits outer surface proteins (Osp) on its outer membrane, and detection of particular Osp antibodies in mammals is suggestive of the infection stage. For example, OspF is typically associated with chronic infection, whereas OspC suggests early infection. A fluorescent bead-based multiplex assay was used to test sera from New York and Pennsylvania white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) for the presence of antibodies to OspA, OspC, and OspF. OspF seroprevalence was significantly greater than both OspA and OspC seroprevalence for all study sites. OspA, OspC, and OspF seroprevalences were significantly greater in Pennsylvania deer than New York deer. The regional differences in seroprevalence are believed to be attributable to a heterogeneous Ixodes scapularis distribution. While most seropositive deer were solely OspF seropositive, deer concurrently OspC and OspF seropositive were the second most commonly encountered individuals. Simultaneous detection of OspF and OspC antibodies may occur when non-infected or chronically infected deer are bitten by an infected tick within a few months of blood collection, thereby inducing production of antibodies associated with the early stages of infection with B. burgdorferi.
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