Bay Area Lyme Foundation, a leading sponsor of Lyme disease research in the U.S., announces the opening of the San Diego collection site of the Bay Area Lyme Foundation’s Lyme Disease Biobank, which is the first program to provide researchers with blood and urine samples from people with early Lyme disease from multiple endemic regions across the country. Congressman Scott Peters and Council member Chris Cate are scheduled to speak at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new collection site, and Council President Pro Tem Barbara Bry, Senator Toni Atkins, and Assembly member Todd Gloria will send representatives to issue commendations to support this event.

Borrelia burgdorferi spirochetes/CDC

“Lyme disease is a growing problem in the County of San Diego, because many of our residents travel to or relocate from other more highly endemic areas and it is also possible to be infected locally,” said Sharon Wampler, PhD, who was instrumental in bringing Bay Area Lyme Foundation’s Lyme Disease Biobank to San Diego. “As a world-class hub for research and innovation, we can be part of the solution. This biobank is an important resource which will help researchers answer many current scientific questions about tick-borne diseases.”

Much research into tick-borne infections is needed, as current diagnostics are inaccurate for more than half of early stage Lyme disease cases, treatments do not work for everyone and late stage Lyme disease can become nearly impossible to cure. In fact, a recent study based on the samples collected by the Lyme Disease Biobank and published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology, found that the Centers for Disease Control’s standard two-tier testing algorithm for Lyme disease failed to accurately diagnose 71% of blood samples from individuals in endemic areas presenting with a Lyme rash, also known as an erythema migrans, greater than 5 cm. In striving to investigate better diagnostics and treatments for tick-borne diseases, researchers require verified blood, urine and tissue samples to use in their studies.

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Currently, there are 50 research projects that rely on Lyme Disease Biobank samples. The San Diego collection center will be in partnership with Osteopathic Medical Associates of San Diego (OMASD).

Read more at Bay Area Lyme Foundation