Lyme disease is an infectious disease caused by a spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi ZS7. This spirochete is most often spread by ticks. Single antibiotic therapy is sufficient for containment of the early stage progression of the disease but combinational therapy is more preferred in later stages. Research is in progress for the development of drugs against the pathogen, but till date no vaccines have been developed to effect the late stage infections.
There is a rapid rise in the cases of antibiotic-resistant population which is more than 10% of the total infected individuals. In such condition vaccine becomes the sole alternative for prevention. Therefore effective treatment includes antibiotic combination and combination of antigenic surfaces (for vaccine preparation). Thus, a comprehensive list of drug targets unique to the microorganisms is often necessary.
Availability of Borrelia burgdorferi ZS7 proteome has enabled insilico analysis of protein sequences for the identification of drug targets and vaccine targets. In this study, 272 essential proteins were identified out of which 42 proteins were unique to the microorganism.
The study identified 15 membrane localized drug targets. Amongst these 15, molecular modeling and structure validation of the five membrane localized drug target proteins could only be achieved because of the low sequence identity of the remaining proteins with RCSB structures. These 3D structures can be further characterized by invitro and invivo studies for the development of novel vaccine epitopes and novel antibiotic therapy against Borrelia burgdorferi.
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I noticed that the authors stated that combination antibiotic treatment is more effective in late stage Lyme disease. What research have they read, what experience do they have which indicates this, and which combination of antibiotics works?
"There is a rapid rise in the cases of antibiotic-resistant population which is more than 10% of the total infected individuals." Does this mean that antibiotics do not work in these patients, and the infection remains - or does it mean something else, in terms of the authors' view? It's not clear to me what they think of this population.
"till date no vaccines have been developed to effect the late stage infections." - I'm wondering if something got lost in translation, because this phrase doesn't make sense. I'm guessing it means vaccines are thought to prevent infection and by extension, late stage infection? I can't see how a vaccine can affect late stage infection.
I welcome the development of new drugs for treating Lyme disease which are disease-specific and non-toxic, and hopefully come with fewer side effects than the choices available now. What will these antibiotics and/or drugs of the future look like? How will they work? How will patients feel when they take them?
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