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Serious Considerations for a Serious Disease

The American Veterinary Medical Association has declared April as Lyme Disease Awareness Month, and for good reason: The incidence of Lyme continues to rise. One out of 16 dogs will test positive, with an upward trend,1,2 while human cases increased from 19,931 in 2006 to over 30,000 cases annually.3,4

The disease remains the most commonly reported vector-borne illness in the US.5 Borrelia burgdorferi causes Lyme disease and is transmitted by Ixodes spp. ticks, commonly called black-legged ticks or deer ticks. The most dominant sign of Lyme disease in dogs is recurrent lameness due to inflammation of the joints; in severe cases, Lyme disease can lead to kidney failure. The best treatments are preventative: vaccination, tick checks after outside activity, and year-round treatment with acaricides against ticks. Among available vaccines, only Nobivac ® Lyme is licensed to aid in the prevention of subclinical arthritis and other signs of Lyme disease.6,7

Infection process

Borrelia burgdorferi expresses outer surface protein A (ospA) when located in the midgut of the tick. After the start of the bloodmeal, Borrelia leave the midgut, migrate to the salivary glands, and increasingly change their ospA to ospC. All vaccines induce borreliacidal antibodies that kill Borrelia expressing ospA, but only Nobivac® Lyme contains a unique isolate which induces ospC borreliacidal antibodies, providing a second line of defense against Borrelia expressing ospC in the tick and in the dog.

In a clinical study, dogs vaccinated with Nobivac® Lyme were naturally challenged with pathogenic Borrelia. No B. burgdorferi were found in the challenge ticks, skin, or joints of vaccinates, as compared with significant counts of B. burgdorferi in the challenge ticks, skin, and joints of the control dogs. Similarly, the vaccinated dogs showed no signs of Lyme disease: no joint inflammation, stiffness, or lameness, whereas two-thirds of the control population presented with joint abnormalities.6

Since 2009, Nobivac® Lyme has been safely administered to more than 2.5 million dogs, and remains the only vaccine indicated to aid in the prevention of subclinical arthritis and other signs of Lyme disease.

Read the full clinical study
Nobivac® Lyme
A powerful weapon against Lyme disease

• For subcutaneous injection
• Available in cartons of 25 x 1-mL
• Annual re-vaccination with 1
  dose is recommended
Company Profile

Merck Merck Animal Health is dedicated to preserving and improving the health, well-being, and performance of animals through science. We offer veterinarians, farmers, pet owners, and governments the widest range of veterinary pharmaceuticals, parasiticides, vaccines, and health management solutions. Merck Animal Health, known as MSD Animal Health outside the United States and Canada, is the global animal health business unit of Merck.
  • More information about
    Nobivac® Lyme

    Visit our website to learn more.

    Copyright © 2014 Intervet Inc, a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc. All rights reserved.

    Intervet Inc. d/b/a as Merck Animal Health, Summit, NJ 07901. US/NLY/0114/0003
  1. Parasite Prevalence Maps,
  2. CAPC 2012 Forecast for Lyme Disease,
  3. CDC provides estimate of Americans diagnosed with Lyme disease each year,
  4. Reported cases of Lyme disease by state or locality, 2003-2012,
  5. Lime Disease Data,
  6. LaFleur RL, Dant JC, Wasmoen TL, et al.
  7. Bacterin that induces anti-OspA and anti-OspC borreliacidal antibodies provides a high level of protection against canine Lyme disease. Clin Vaccine Immunol. 2009;16(2):253-259.
  8. Data on file, Merck Animal Health. 
SmartBrief Archives: Related News
  • Research explores xenodiagnosis for persistent Lyme symptoms
    A recent study examined the possibility of testing people for post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome by allowing disease-free ticks to feed on the subjects and then testing the ticks for the Lyme bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi. The method, known as xenodiagnosis, has been used in animals. Testing on 23 people determined that the process is safe, only causing itching in some patients at the site of the tick bite. (2/18)
  • Study finds evidence Lyme disease could be transmitted via intercourse
    It's possible that Lyme disease, caused by a tick-borne pathogen, can be transmitted via intercourse, according to new research. Samples of reproductive fluids collected from men and women with Lyme disease tested positive for the spirochete, although the pathogen was more commonly seen in samples collected from infected women than men. "The presence of the Lyme spirochete in genital secretions and identical strains in married couples strongly suggests that sexual transmission of the disease occurs," said physician Peter Mayne. Science World Report (1/26)
  • Tick GI flora may explain Lyme disease distribution
    Microbes that populate the GI tract of the tick Ixodes scapularis, the vector for Lyme disease, may determine whether a tick becomes colonized with the Lyme pathogen Borrelia burgdorferi, according to research from the Yale School of Medicine. The researchers intend to study whether this explains the uneven prevalence of Lyme disease in the Northeast despite the ticks' ubiquitous presence. (1/16)
  • Deaths from Lyme complication could signal new public health threat
    A CDC report documents three recent fatal human cases of cardiac inflammation characteristic of Lyme disease carditis in the Northeast. Some 300,000 Lyme disease cases occur in humans in the U.S. annually, according to the CDC, and heart inflammation is a rare but possible complication of the infection. The apparent spike in complications, which might be a statistical anomaly, warrants investigation because the cases could signify a new strain, experts said. Massachusetts public health veterinarian Catherine M. Brown, an author on the CDC paper, said the cases emphasize the need for prompt identification of infections and antibiotic treatment. The Boston Globe (tiered subscription model) (12/13), NBC News (12/12)
  • Protein is crucial to spread of Lyme disease (12/19)
  • Decline in red foxes, rise in coyotes correlate with Lyme disease abundance, data suggest
    Green Bay Press-Gazette (Wis.) (tiered subscription model)/ (1/11)
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