Immunization with a polyvalent OspA vaccine protects mice against Ixodes ricinus tick bites infected by Borrelia burgdorferi ss, Borrelia garinii and Borrelia afzelii

Vaccine. 1997 Oct;15(14):1551-7. doi: 10.1016/s0264-410x(97)00066-2.


Sequence variability of the outer surface protein (Osp) A among Borrelia burgdorferi sl species suggests that a monovalent OspA vaccine may not protect against the various Borrelia present in Eurasia. Here, we confirmed that a monovalent recombinant OspA (rOspA) vaccine does not protect mice against Ixodes ricinus mediated infection with B. burgdorferi ss, Borrelia garinii and Borrelia afzelii. However, when mice were vaccinated with a cocktail of various rOspA from these three species, they were protected, and all challenge ticks that fed on them were cleared of their spirochetes. These results showed that a multiple OspA antigens vaccine, compatible with human use, was very efficient at protecting mice against B. burgdorferi ss, B. garinii, and B. afzelii.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / blood
  • Antigens, Surface / immunology*
  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins / immunology*
  • Bacterial Vaccines / immunology*
  • Blotting, Western
  • Female
  • Immunization
  • Insect Vectors / microbiology*
  • Ixodes / microbiology*
  • Lipoproteins*
  • Lyme Disease / diagnosis
  • Lyme Disease / prevention & control*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • Antigens, Surface
  • Bacterial Outer Membrane Proteins
  • Bacterial Vaccines
  • Lipoproteins
  • OspA protein