New Tick-Borne Disease Discovered in Sweden

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New Tick-Borne Disease Discovered in Sweden

Post by RitaA » Wed 7 Dec 2011 6:24 ... 131404.htm
New Tick-Borne Disease Discovered in Sweden

ScienceDaily (Dec. 6, 2011) — Researchers at the University of Gothenburg's Sahlgrenska Academy have discovered a brand new tick-borne infection. Since the discovery, eight cases have been described around the world, three of them in the Gothenburg area, Sweden.

In July 2009 a 77-year-old man from western Sweden was out kayaking when he went down with acute diarrhea, fever and temporary loss of consciousness. He was taken to hospital where it was found that he was also suffering with deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Following treatment with antibiotics, he was discharged some days later with an anticoagulant to thin his blood. However, the man -- who had an impaired immune system -- went down with a fever again.

Brand new infection

Over the following months the 77-year-old was admitted as an emergency case on several occasions, but despite repeated attempts to find a microbe, and repeated doses of antibiotics, the fever returned. Finally the patient's blood underwent special analysis to look for bacterial DNA -- and that produced results. The findings matched a bacterium in an online gene bank and the results were a sensation: the man had contracted a brand new infection in humans which had never been described in the world before.

Never before seen in Sweden

The man's blood contained DNA that derived with 100% certainty from the bacterium Neoehrlichia mikurensis. This bacterium was identified for the first time in Japan in 2004 in rats and ticks but had never before been seen in Sweden in ticks, rodents or humans.

Christine Wennerås, a doctor and researcher at the Department of Infectious Diseases and the Department of Haematology and Coagulation at the University of Gothenburg's Sahlgrenska Academy, has been studying the case since it first came to light. Last year she was able, for the first time, to describe the newly discovered disease in a scientific article published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology.

"Since our discovery the bacterium has been reported in eight cases around the world, three of them in Gothenburg," says Wennerås.

Causes DVT

All three of the Gothenburg cases involved patients with an impaired immune system, all of whom became ill during the summer months when ticks are most active.

"The nasty thing about this infection is that it causes DVT, at least in people with an impaired immune system," says Wennerås. "This can be life-threatening. Fortunately, the infection can be treated successfully with antibiotics.

Spreads from mammals

"If the newly discovered bacterium is similar to those we already know, it has presumably spread from wild mammals to people via ticks, and it is unlikely that it can be passed on from person to person."

The mikurensis in the bacterium's name comes from the Japanese island of Mikura, where it was first discovered.

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Re: New Tick-Borne Disease Discovered in Sweden

Post by X-member » Tue 3 Jan 2012 15:18

Sorry, this article is in Swedish, but if you are more curious use google translate!

"Medicinen gjorde bettet farligt" (The medication made the tick bite dangerous) ... et-farligt

I give you a translation (with google translate) of a part of the article:

A 60-year-old woman had a few years ago the immune suppressant therapy because of a blood cancer disease. The summer afterwards, when she was out canoeing, she suffered from diarrhea, fever and chills. She also lost consciousness briefly during the night, reported her paddling buddy.

The woman was taken to hospital. It was suspected blood poisoning and gave her intravenous antibiotics for a week. But no microbe found, however, a number of small blood clots. These can also cause fever and she was discharged with a prescription for blood thinner heparin.

A month later the patient to us with high fever, high blood pressure and red rash that looked like a skin infection called erysipelas. For two days she received intravenous antibiotics and we took samples from blood, urine and swab from the mouth to check for bacteria and viruses. All cultures were negative. Then we shifted the antibiotic, and after nine days the fever subsided. Ten days later she had to go home, with continued antibiotic therapy.

Three weeks later returned her fever and chills, and even erysipelas. She was treated at home with antibiotics but came to us again a week later, because the fever did not want to give up. Now, she received new antibiotic to try to deal with bacteria that can cause erysipelas, such as Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus.

She had also been weak in the left hand, which could indicate a blood clot. However, CT-scan of the brain looked normal.

Persistent fever may be due to heart valves are infected, but this seemed nothing abnormal. Again, samples were taken from blood, urine, feces and munsvabbar, but all cultures were negative.
I don't give you the rest of the story, but as I have posted it here in this topic, maybe you can guess what it really was?

Info about erysipelas (from CDC): ... ctions.htm
Erysipelas is a bacterial infection that occurs in the top layers of the skin. It's also called St. Anthony's Fire because it burns and is very painful. In erysipelas, the skin is usually very red and swollen and there is a well-defined border between normal and infected skin.

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Re: New Tick-Borne Disease Discovered in Sweden

Post by X-member » Mon 27 Feb 2012 23:01

They have found this infection in Denmark, too!

Article in Danish:

"Skovflåterne kan smitte med ny sygdom" ... 084639.htm

A quote (use google translate if you need an translation):
Skovflåterne på Bornholm smitter ikke kun med de frygtede sygdomme borrelia og TBE, men også med en relativt nyopdaget bakterie, N. mikurensis.

Bakterien er ifølge Berlingske Tidende foreløbig fundet i skovflåter fra det sydlige Bornholm, Tokkekøb Hegn i Nordsjælland og Viborg.

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Re: New Tick-Borne Disease Discovered in Sweden

Post by ChuckG » Tue 28 Feb 2012 0:28
J Clin Microbiol. 2012 Mar;50(3):943-7. Epub 2012 Jan 11.
"Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis," Anaplasma phagocytophilum, and Lyme Disease Spirochetes in Questing European Vector Ticks and in Feeding Ticks Removed from People.
Richter D, Matuschka FR.
Address correspondence to Dania Richter,
To estimate the likelihood of people coming into contact with the recently described tick-borne agent "Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis," we compared its prevalence to those of Lyme disease spirochetes and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in questing adult Ixodes ricinus ticks collected in various Central European sites and examined ticks, which had been removed from people, for the presence of these pathogens. Whereas spirochetes infected questing adult ticks most frequently (22.3%), fewer than a third as many ticks were infected by "Ca. Neoehrlichia mikurensis" (6.2%), and about a sixth harbored A. phagocytophilum (3.9%). On average, every twelfth encounter of a person with an I. ricinus tick (8.1%) may bear the risk of acquiring "Ca. Neoehrlichia mikurensis." Although a fifth of the people (20%) had removed at least one tick infected by "Ca. Neoehrlichia mikurensis," none displayed symptoms described for this pathogen, suggesting that its transmission may not be immediate and/or that immunocompetent individuals may not be affected. Because immunosuppressed patients may be at a particular risk of developing symptoms, it should be considered that "Ca. Neoehrlichia mikurensis" appears to be the second most common pathogen in I. ricinus ticks. In our survey, only Borrelia afzelii appears to infect Central European vector ticks more frequently.

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Re: New Tick-Borne Disease Discovered in Sweden

Post by X-member » Tue 28 Feb 2012 13:12

From Chucks post above:
In our survey, only Borrelia afzelii appears to infect Central European vector ticks more frequently.
Thank you, this info I needed! ;)

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