Monday, September 26, 2011

0 Round Three: Lyme Disease Research Scavenger Hunt

I gave readers an extension until midnight of Friday the 23rd for participating on Round Two of the Lyme Disease Research Scavenger Hunt, and so far, no one has completed both Part A and Part B of Round Two.

Because of this, no one qualifies for Round Two and that round is forfeit. Readers playing along at home will have to compete in the remaining rounds and complete both Part A and Part B. So far, we have one winner of Round One, Rita.

(The answers to Round Two will be posted in a separate upcoming entry.)

Now I'll present those who wish to play along with our basic game instructions and round three of the scavenger hunt:

This is an online scavenger hunt to determine which Lyme disease research being conducted in which universities and colleges involves or has involved members of the 2006 Lyme disease guidelines group.

How to play:

I'm going to list Lyme disease related research either completed or currently being done in Column A, and in Column B, list the educational institution where the research was (or is) being conducted.

Match the research in Column A with the correct educational institution in Column B.

THEN determine if members of the department involved are A) currently doing research with a member of the 2006 Lyme disease guideline authors or B) have worked on any research in a past with said guideline author(s).

Write your matches and mentions of any guideline authors in a comment and submit your comment for posting.

You can use google, Wikipedia, and any on and offline tools for your answers.

Roughly two weeks after I post a round, I'll post the correct answers as well as post the next round of the game. I intend to run the game for several weeks - end date to be announced later.

If anyone wins all rounds, after that win is confirmed, the next post I write will be based on the winner's selected topic of choice and include hand-drawn illustrations by me.

Round Three: Lyme Disease Scavenger Hunt
Research DescriptionEducational Institution
1) Lyme arthritis is an inflammatory disease with periods of inflammation and resolution. Eicosanoids are powerful lipid mediators of inflammatory responses which may be involved in disease processes. Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is upregulated during injury or infection and catalyzes the production of prostaglandins from arachidonic acid. Several commercially available drugs block this response (celebrex, vioxx) and act to suppress the symptoms of chronic inflammation (pain and swelling), but their effect on underlying disease processes is currently unknown. Treatment of mice infected with B. burgdorferi with these compounds does not inhibit their ability to develop Lyme arthritis, but it does prevent its natural resolution. Current experiments are exploring the mechanism for this examining: altered prostaglandin production; increased leukotriene production; and decreased lipoxin production.
A) University of Tennessee
2) iNKT cells play an important immunoregulatory role within the immune system. This function is regulated by endogenous and exogenous glycolipid antigen presentation by CD1d molecules. Thus, by using Borellia burgdorferi, the agent of Lyme disease, as the model system, we are working to elucidate the molecules involved with and the mechanism(s) of CD1d-antigen assembly. Additionally, by understanding how antigens load onto CD1d we can determine the molecular and structural features of the iNKT cell receptor-antigen interface. Elucidating glycolipid antigen processing and presentation and its recognition by iNKT cells will allow insights into how different responses are induced and how these immunoregulatory T lymphocytes function. This insight will advance our understanding of the physiological role of the CD1d antigen presentation system and iNKT cells within the context of the immune system.
B) University of Missouri
3) One major project is the development of a Reservoir Target Vaccine for the Control of Lyme Borreliosis. Borrelia burgdorferi causes Lyme disease (LD) and is the most common vector borne infectious disease in the United States. This spirochete is maintained in endemic areas of LD by cycling between wildlife reservoirs (i. e. white-footed mice, shrews, etc) and the Ixodes scapularis tick vector. Human disseminated infection can cause permanent damage to the nervous and musculoskeletal systems and currently, there is no vaccine approved for prevention of this disease. A promising method to reduce human LD incidence is to break the mouse-tick transmission cycle by eliminating the spirochete from the reservoir and from the ticks that feed on them. To accomplish this we have developed a wildlife oral bait vaccine based in OspA and are currently testing its efficacy in a field trial.
C) Vanderbilt University

There is much to learn from playing this game in and of itself that you gain something whether you win or lose. (I also have a point to make in playing it, and I'll reveal it at the end of the series... It might not be the point you suspect I'm going to make.)


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