In a recent study conducted in central Pennsylvania, evidence of emerging pathogens, some also common to ticks, have been found in fleas. Various pathogens can be spread by ectoparasites among animal host populations in nature. Along with ticks, fleas are found to commonly infest small mammals. The role of pathogen transmission cycles for these vectors is unknown. Only the white footed mouse tested positive for the blood‐borne pathogens examined, with 47 (18.1%) positive for Anaplasma phagocytophilum and ten (4.8%) positive for Babesia microti. Other pathogens included Bartonella vinsonii, B. microti, and a Rickettsia felis‐like bacterium.
Other Tick-Borne Diseases
One tick bite can give people more than one tick-borne disease (co-infection). In addition to Lyme disease, here are some other tick-borne diseases found in the US.
Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (SFTS) cases first appeared in April 2020 in China and since then, 37 more cases have occurred in Jiangsu and 23 in Anhui Provinces in China. SFTS is a haemorrhagic fever transmitted by the Haemaphysalis longicornis tick (Asian longhorned tick). The disease spreads rapidly and has a high fatality rate […]
The picture in New Jersey of spotted fever group rickettsiosis (SFGR), which includes Rocky Mountain Spotted fever (RMSF), is complex. In this latest study from the Am. Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (James Occi, Rutgers University, et al, ), the researchers tested American dog ticks and lone star ticks in NJ to determine which […]
Alpha-gal is a sugar molecule found in most mammals (not people, apes, monkeys) and in products made from mammals including medications, vaccines, cosmetics, gelatin and milk products. It is not normally found in fish, reptiles or birds. Alpha gal is also found in some types of ticks. Click here for CDC website on Alpha-gal What […]
Meat allergy caused by the bite of the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum. The tick’s saliva triggers immune response to a carbohydrate, alpha-gal, found in red meat. Although eating red meat is the most common allergic trigger to alpha-gal, ingredients found in everyday products such as dairy, gelatin, soap, cosmetics, lotions, household products, and […]
Tick paralysis Caused by a neurotoxin secreted by Dermacentor variabilis (American dog), Dermacentor andersoni (Rocky Mt. wood), Ixodes scapularis (deer/blacklegged), and Amblyomma americanum (lone star ticks). Symptoms begin 2-6 days after attachment and primarily involve a paralysis that begins in the feet and spreads upward. May be fatal if respiratory muscles involved. Paralysis resolves when tick […]
Q fever is caused by Coxiella burnetti (Cb). Disease can be tick-borne, but most cases result from inhaling Cb-containing dust. Cattle, sheep and goats are the primary reservoirs. Symptoms include high fevers up to 105°F, severe headache, malaise, myalgia, chills and/or sweats, cough, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, chest pain, and may include endocarditis, encephalitis, pneumonia, hepatitis, splenomegaly. […]
Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) is caused by the bacterium Rickettsia rickettsii. Symptoms include fever, headaches, myalgia; characteristic spotted rash* begins on wrists, ankles, palms, and soles, and may be absent early in the disease. Treatment is usually doxycycline. *RMSF rash photo courtesy of Ed Masters, MD. Humans and pets may contract RMSF. […]
Borrelia miyamotoi is a bacteria is in the relapsing fever group of Borrelia. Although it’s not closely related to the Lyme disease bacteria, it can cause a Lyme-like-illness. Symptoms include fever, headaches, muscle aches and chills, rash uncommon. Diagnosis is by PCR testing that is now available at several labs. Treatment is doxycycline. Borrelia miyamotoi was identified […]
Powassan (POW) is caused by a flavivirus. There are two virus types. One virus type is transmitted by the deer tick/blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis): lineage 2 POW virus (“deer tick virus”). The other virus type is transmitted by other Ixodes ticks – Ixodes marxi (squirrel tick), and Ixodes cookei (woodchuck tick–found E. of Rockies into New […]