Detection of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis agent and Borrelia burgdorferi in ticks by polymerase chain reaction

J Vet Diagn Invest. 1998 Jan;10(1):56-9. doi: 10.1177/104063879801000110.


Adult ixodid ticks were collected from Westchester County, New York, and Ipswich, Massachusetts, to determine the presence of infection with a human granulocytic ehrlichiosis (HGE) agent by using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The presence of Borrelia burgdorferi in ticks collected from New York was also determined by PCR. Of the 229 ticks from New York and 47 ticks from Massachusetts, 9% (22/229) and 25% (12/47) of ticks contained HGE agent, respectively. Fifty-four percent (123/229) of the ticks collected from New York were B. burgdorferi positive; 4% (9/229) of these ticks contained both HGE agent and B. burgdorferi. This finding indicates that animals with Lyme borreliosis may be also exposed to the etiologic agent of HGE. More extensive laboratory diagnosis may be necessary when multiple tick-borne diseases are suspected in animals.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Borrelia burgdorferi Group / isolation & purification*
  • DNA Primers
  • Ehrlichia / isolation & purification*
  • Ehrlichiosis / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Ixodes / microbiology*
  • Massachusetts
  • New York
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods


  • DNA Primers