Demonstration of Borrelia burgdorferi DNA in Urine Samples from healthy humans whose sera contain B. burgdorferi-specific antibodies

Published Date
Journal of Clinical Microbiology
J Clin Microbiol. 1994 Sep;32(9):2312-4
Karch H
Huppertz HI
Böhme M
Schmidt H
Wiebecke D
Schwarzkopf A

Since the possibility of asymptomatic infection with Borrelia burgdorferi has been suggested by a positive serology found in healthy subjects, we hypothesized that these subjects might excrete borrelial DNA sequences in urine as happens in patients with Lyme borreliosis. We found borrelial sequences by nested PCR in the urine samples from 3 of 13 healthy B. burgdorferi antibody-positive adults but not in urine samples from 79 antibody-negative healthy controls. After therapy with doxycycline, the urine samples were repeatedly negative for B. burgdorferi DNA. We conclude that urinary excretion of borrelial DNA sequences may occur in seropositive healthy subjects during asymptomatic infection. Demonstration of such sequences in urine must be interpreted cautiously and may not necessarily prove a borrelial cause of disease.