NIAID scientists are investigating the genetic diversity of the Borrelia bacterium, its geographic spread, and how the bacterium adapts to its host environment upon infection. Much of this work is done using colonies of live ticks that are studied both independently and using rodent models. Through the knowledge gained from these studies, the scientists hope to develop better prevention and diagnostic strategies to reduce the risk of infection and disease in people.
Fieldwork has been done in diverse locations, ranging from villages in Mali, West Africa, to the shores of Wild Horse Island on Flathead Lake in Montana.
Last Updated November 15, 2011
Last Reviewed November 14, 2011