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The Lyme Disease Spirochete, Borrelia Burgdorferi, Forms Spheroplasts In the Presence of Spingolipid Analogue Ppmp

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 July 2020

Lori L. Lubke
Affiliation:
Bacterial Pathogenesis Section, Rocky Mountain Laboratories Microscopy Branch, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Hamilton, Montana59840
Claude F. Garon
Affiliation:
Bacterial Pathogenesis Section, Rocky Mountain Laboratories Microscopy Branch, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Hamilton, Montana59840

Extract

Lyme disease is the most common arthropod-borne infection in the United States. Over 100,000 cases have been reported to date. The disease is a multisystem disorder with dermatologic, neurologic and rheumatologic manifestations. The causative agent, Borrelia burgdorferi1has been isolated from ticks, animals and humans from around the world and can generally be cultured in the laboratory using BSK-II medium.

While biologically significant concentrations of eukaryotic cell inhibitors such as aphidicolin, ara C, cis platinum, CPX, hydroxyurea, mimosine, nalidixic acid, trioxsalen and boromethyglycine showed little effect on the growth of Borrelia burgdorferiwhen added to BSK-II cultures, PPMP, a spingolipid analogue, showed immediate and profound inhibitory effects when monitored by dark-field microscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), field emission scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and by optical density measurements at 600 mμ. PPMP (dl-thzreo-l-phenyl-2-palmitoylamino-3-morpholino-l-propanol) is known to inhibit the synthesis of spingomyelin in Chinese hamster ovary cells and to inhibit the synthesis of glucosylceramides in a large variety of mammalian cells.

Type
Microbiology
Copyright
Copyright © Microscopy Society of America

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References

1.Barbour, A. G. et al, The biological and social phenomenon of Lyme disease. Science 260 (1993)1610CrossRefGoogle Scholar
2.Burgdorfer, W. et al., Lyme disease - a tick-borne spirochetosis? Science 216(1982)1317CrossRefGoogle Scholar
3.Madoff, S. et al, The L-forms of bacteria. In A. Belows (ed): The prokaryots. Springer, New York (1992)4068Google Scholar
4.Preac Mursic, V. et al, Formation and cultivation of Borrelia burgdorferi Spheroplast-L-form variants. Infection 24(1996)218Google Scholar

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