Why Your Dog Can Get Vaccinated Against Lyme Disease And You Can’t

Canine vaccines protect against Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacterium that causes Lyme disease. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

BOSTON — Eleven-year-old “Ned Kelly” is in for his annual physical at a clinic in Boston’s Jamaica Plain neighborhood. As part of his check-up, he’s getting a booster shot to protect him against Lyme disease. Ned doesn’t like needles, but he holds still while Dr. Joel Kaye squeezes the pink serum under his skin.

“Little pinch,” says Dr. Kaye, “we’ll be home free. All right, good job!”

Ned is lucky, because he’s one of the select few who can get the vaccine that gives him immunity against Lyme disease.

Ned is lucky because he’s a dog.

At the MSPCA Angell Animal Medical Center, dogs are regularly vaccinated against Lyme. Ned’s owner, Joe Turchin, lives in Falmouth. Ticks are bad there and Lyme is prevalent.

Turchin’s glad he can protect his dog. But he wishes there were a human vaccine, too.

“You know, if there were a vaccine,” Turchin says, “our doctors would be suggesting it to us, certainly for those of us on the Cape and the islands. Because it’s a horrendous plague!”

Actually, modern science has given us a human vaccine against Lyme disease.

Too bad we don’t use it.

“Lyme disease is the only infection I know of where we have a safe and effective vaccine, but it’s not available to the public,” says Dr. Allen Steere, the physician who uncovered the disease. Steere was 33 years old back in 1975 when he was sent to the Connecticut town of Lyme to look into a mysterious cluster of kids who had gotten arthritis.

Dr. Allen Steere, the discoverer of Lyme disease (Josh Berlinger for WBUR)

“Four or five months into the investigation, we came to suspect that ticks may be involved,” Steere said of his team’s work. They had found a previously unknown disease, and ever since, Lyme has been Steere’s life’s work.

After the discovery, he and other scientists first isolated the spiral-shaped bacterium that causes Lyme disease, and then they looked for ways to make people immune to it. Today, Steere’s laboratory is at Massachusetts General Hospital. He says finding a biological pathway to vaccinate against Lyme was a major milestone.

“Lyme disease was epidemic in certain locations, particularly in the northeastern United States,” Steere says. “So here was the possibility of really changing that.”

By the mid-1990s, two pharmaceutical companies began trials of candidate vaccines.

Dr. Gregory Poland is a vaccinologist at the Mayo Clinic. He says the vaccines helped people build up lots of antibodies that killed the Lyme agent relatively quickly. “So that when a tick bites you and sucks your blood, it is sucking up the antibodies out of your blood,” Poland says. “Those antibodies go into the tick’s gut, kill the Lyme organisms so that when that tick then regurgitates into your skin, you don’t get Lyme disease.”

Poland says as innovative as these vaccines were for killing the Lyme bacterium before it even got into your body, they weren’t perfect. You had to get booster shots, so it took a year to become immune. It wasn’t approved for children 14 and under. Still, for those 15 and above, it worked pretty well. Human trials conducted by Steere showed that about 80 percent of those vaccinated gained immunity.

“People are fed up! This is a terrible situation we’re in, which means that a vaccine still makes sense.”
– Sam Telford, veterinarian

Introduced in 1998, the vaccine sold well at first. But then opponents spoke out: self-described ‘vaccine victims’ — perhaps similar to people today who claim the MMR vaccine causes autism. Back then, they said that the Lyme vaccine gave them arthritis.

“And this sort of got into popular lore,” Poland recalls. “It got on the Internet. There were a number of East Coast lawyers who started putting together class-action lawsuits. There were anti-vaccine advocacy groups that were formed.”

And there were threats against the scientists who had worked to help protect people against the disease. Poland had to hide where he lived. Steere got a security detail.

The clinical data did not back up any of this. The trials had not shown such side effects. The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control looked into the claims, and then continued to recommended that people exposed to tick-infested areas get the vaccine.

But it was too late. Sales had plummeted. Four years after offering people immunity against Lyme, SmithKline Beecham stopped making the vaccine. The second vaccine-maker, Pasteur Mérieux Connaught, saw what had happened and never put out its own product.

The vaccine kills lyme bacteria in the tick before they even make it into the dog’s body. (Curt Nickish/WBUR)

“Now with the withdrawal of the vaccine, people are doing all kinds of things,” Poland says.

Poland notes that since then, Lyme has become more widespread and is now the most common tick-borne disease in the country.

“I’m personally aware of individuals, who in desperation have gone to veterinarians and remarkably convinced the veterinarian to inject them with the canine vaccine,” he says.

Despite the growing demand for access to a human vaccine, many drug companies say not they’re not interested in working on one.

“There are so many diseases,” notes Farshad Guirakhoo, senior director of external in North America at Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of the drug giant Sanofi. His company is working instead on a vaccine for dengue fever.

“For diseases like Lyme disease, the medical need is smaller,” Guirakhoo says. “So we need to put our resources toward where the medical need is greater and then you can make the vaccine.”

With little to no interest from drug companies, some people want government to step in — even state government. Earlier this month, at a hearing of the new Massachusetts Lyme Disease Commission, veterinarian Sam Telford suggested the Bay State license GlaxoSmithKline’s FDA-approved vaccine.

“We all know that the market has changed,” Dr. Telford said then. “People are fed up! This is a terrible situation we’re in, which means that a vaccine still makes sense.”

Telford arguess the state could make it at the UMass Biologics Laboratory in Jamaica Plain, a facility that has made other vaccines before. GlaxoSmithKline would not say whether it would consider such an option.

So for now, there’s no sign of any vaccine becoming available. And if there were, Poland says the old opponents are already promising to fight the introduction of any new Lyme vaccine.

“So we know scientifically how to develop a vaccine that would protect against all this human misery,” Poland says with an air of regret. “And yet, for these societal and cultural reasons, not scientific reasons, that will not be done in the foreseeable future in the U.S.”

Steere is a little more hopeful. The man who first connected the mysterious affliction to the ticks of Lyme, Conn., back in 1975, has worked on the disease his entire professional life. Losing the human vaccine that he had helped along, he admits, was a major setback. But he doesn’t want to assign blame.

“Multiple things happened,” Steere says. “What I’d like to see happen now, is that it’s possible to move on. Even make a better vaccine. I think that’s still possible.”

Until that day, people are going to have to try to protect themselves. Long pants. Insecticides. Body inspections. People are going to have to keep living with Lyme.

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  • KMDickson

    As for what OspA (LYMErix) is, no one associated with Yale, the CDC, the NIH, NIAID, or IDSociety.org has ever said what it was, despite being asked numerous times.  What is, is is a triacyl lipopeptide managed by TLR2, and as such, turns off the immune response.
    See m abou it here:
    Note that ^^^ Anthony Fauci was a bit upset to learn that LYMErix failed when it was an HIV vaccine, too.

  • KMDickson

    I do not see where someone said the question of what OspA was was answered.  It has not been answered.  I myself called every agency associated with the DHHS.gov:  Sebelius’s office, Fauci’s office, Collins’ office, the NIAID Lyme Group head (Joe Breen), Yale School of Public Health, and IDsociety.org and not one person would answer the question as to what OspA was (the structure).   What OspA is, is not anything that could have been a human vaccine because it is a triacyl lipopeptide managed by TLR2.  The chronic agonism of TLR2 turns off the immune response.  That means no antbodies are produced.  The controversy is exactly over what OspA is and does.http://www.actionlyme.org/index.htm  

    • Jen

      TRL-2 is actually an integral part of any immune response, much like the other TRLs in other infections. And many of the clinical trials showed a great antibody response to OspA so your belief that TRL-2 turns B cell mediated antibody production off is wrong.

  • KMDickson

    Here is how Allen Steere falsified the testing for Lyme in Europe:
    Here is how Allen Steere falsified the testing for Lyme in 1992 on a trip to Germany:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8106763“The group 1 strain of B. burgdorferi, G39/40, used in this study and in the previous study of US patients was isolated from an Ixodes damini tick in Guilford, Connecticut [21].  The group 2 strain, FRG [Federal Republic of Germany], was isolated from Ixodes ricinus near  Cologne [22].  The group 3 strain, IP3, was isolated from Ixodes persulcatus near Leningrad [23].  All three strains used in this study were *** high passage isolates,*** which were classified by Richard Marconi (Rocky Mountain Laboratory, Hamilton, MT) using 16S ribosomal RNA sequence determination as described [11, 24].  The recombinant preparations of OspA and OspB used in this study were purified maltose- binding protein-Osp fusion proteins derived from group 1 strain B31 [25].  The fusion proteins contained the full-length OspA or OspB sequence ***without the lipid moiety*** or the signal sequence -”This is the CDC’s Dearborn method:http://www.cdc.gov/mmwR/preview/mmwrhtml/00038469.htmNotice there is no band 31 (OspA) or 34 (OspB), because no antibodies will be produced when there is no lipid attached to the recombinant OspA and B proteins.This is the CDC’s Dearborn method:http://www.cdc.gov/mmwR/preview/mmwrhtml/00038469.htmNotice there is no band 31 (OspA) or 34 (OspB), because no antibodies will be produced when there is no lipid attached to the recombinant OspA and B proteins.

    • KMDickson

      That’s called “research fraud.”   

  • KMDickson

    LYMErix was removed from the market at the behest of the FDA in Feb 2002.  It was not removed because it produced an autoimmune arthritis.  It was removed becuase this ***fungal antigen caused system illness due to immune suppression***, the activation of opportunistics apparently such as Epstein-Barr/Similars, and resulted in TOLERANCE to other fungal infection in the blood, like mycoplasma, which results in Chronic Fatigue.

     This phenomena, formally named “The New Great Imitator” outcomes (MS, Lupus, ALS, Cancer, etc), was also caused by spirochetal blebbing or the autovaccination with borrelial antigens that occcurs simply because varying and shedding surface antigens happens to be the nature of the relapse in RELAPSING FEVER (the real name of the disease).   See more at  http://www.actionlyme.org/index.htm  

  • Burdge52

    I know one thing!
    the day Dr. Charles Jones goes to heaven people like mother Teresa
    will be waiting in line to thank him for working most of his life to help all the children
    that are suffering from tick borne illnesses.
    Thank you Dr. Jones for all that you have done.

  • guest

    This is rubbish.  There were real and documented defects in this vaccine.  Your reporter has done a bad job researching this story.

    Not all vaccines work the first time around.  Look at the first polio vaccine which injured a lot of people.  Then it was reworked and later versions were better.

  • Joan of Arc

    Check out this video on YouTube:


    Allen Steere…a one man wrecking crew! Although there are many who jumped on board with him…$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

  • Jerryleonard999
  • Jerryleonard999

    The CDC’s “Smoking Gun”
    Vaccine-Marketing Blueprint for Perpetuating Lyme Disease Under the
    Pretext of Treating It (Steere-Camp Non-Treatment Model)

    Part 4: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRA6HHGXHu8

    (Physicians Round Table (2012): Invited Talk
    Connecting the Dots: Lyme Disease and Biowarfare)

  • Jerryleonard999

    Steere only discovered the
    tick vector, not the disease agent. And this was only after one of his
    patients walked into his office with the tick that had bit him in a
    plastic bag. Polly Murray and others had long proposed an insect vector
    (duh)… but they had to let it go
    untreated by perpetuating ignorance for as long as possible to get the
    epidemic going… the CDC article says they needed at least a 100%
    increase in disease rates for the vaccine to be marketable (that was in
    1999)… all done under biowarfare research justification… Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cK6rNXegcAA (Connecting the Dots: Tuskegee Experimentation Continued Through National Security Infrastructure)

  • Ephesians320

    First off, a veterinarian explains (or is supposed to by AVMA standards) that the Lyme vaccine for dogs is not 100% effective (it’s actually much, much lower). Many clients have made complaints about the Lyme vaccine because of instances of ineffectiveness. 

    When there was a human Lyme Disease vaccine, it was recalled and pulled off the market. The article fails to mention that.

    The idea of the antibody ending up in the tick is far-fetched at best. The vaccine cannot be highly effective, because an impossibly high antibody load in a patient’s body is necessary for the antibody to end up within the tick. People are not going to be signing up for a clinical trial on this one.Lyme Disease can be caused by MANY different strains of Borrelia, often combined with other infectious bacteria. When a healthy patient’s body recognizes (from earlier exposure) Borrelia Burgdorferi it sends out antibodies created by his/her body. This may work, or it may not. 
    The vaccine doesn’t contain pieces of the other strains of Borrelia nor the other infectious bacteria. Furthermore, the infection varies from patient to patient. The strains of Borrelia vary and so do the co-infections. The Lyme vaccine is far from ready to administer to the public. The CDC and FDA need to get the disease straightened out and recognized adequately as the giant public health concern it is, FIRST.  

    • http://twitter.com/CurtNickisch Curt Nickisch

      Thanks for weighing in.  Let me add that the Lyme disease vaccine was not recalled as you say.  The FDA and CDC continued to recommend it for at-risk individuals.  The manufacturer stopped making it, citing “low demand.”

      The experience prompted other pharmaceutical companies to give up on their efforts.  Aventis Pasteur, for instance, had announced already in 2001:

      “In the case of Lyme disease, we considered the market acceptance of the existing vaccine against the resources needed to develop a second-generation vaccine and we concluded that other projects already in our pipeline offered greater promise.”

      • shobud


      • shazdancer

        But WHY were there low sales? 1) Expensive, 2) Only 80% effective (one in 5 still get sick), 3) those with HLA DR4 were contracting arthritis from the vaccine, and 4) there was speculation that those with latent Lyme were becoming symptomatic. Which resulted in 5) lawsuits in the wings.

      • Alexander Davis

        Of course the manufacturer wouldn’t say, “we’re withdrawing it because of lawsuits!”   And the FDA is just a ghost of its former effective self when led by David Kessler. Now it’s “caveat emptor.”  

        • MadHatter

          “Withdrawing because of lawsuits” is not the same as the FDA recalling it.  It’s not even close.  Pharma quit making it because lawsuits (unjustified) made it too costly to continue.  

          This is terribly unfortunate, but not so surprising.

          • Alexander Davis

            The bodies have to pile up pretty high for the FDA to recall anything these days.  

  • Namaste

    I have been clicking on the links posted by Mr. Leonard below. I’m in a state of shock. I knew about the medical controversy and the corrupt IDSA panel, but I did not realize the American public might as well be lab rats. I have Lyme Disease. I was in the “late stage” when diagnosed. I had 9 months of cocktails of IV antibiotics fed in through a PICC line in my jugular vein, along with orals. Even though the IVs have ended, I am still under aggressive treatment. And I am light-years better than 1 year ago. 

    This disease ripped me from my doctor of veterinary medicine studies and life as I knew it. Last year this time, my parents tell me I was close to death. My husband left, and they took over caring for me. Of course, insurance quit paying and then came after me for money they had already paid…My story is hardly different from other patients’ with advanced Lyme Disease.

    All of this because of a tick, I thought. All of this because of nature’s imbalance, I thought. But I never thought, all of this because of my government’s experimentation on its own people, and thus me. I come from a family with a long history of military service. In my family, we have given our lives, in one way or another, to this country. And last year, I almost lost mine!?????

  • Lymeticktest

    I own and operate MassDeerService, Inc. We are now distributing the first at-home test kits for determing if the tick that just bit you is carrying the bacteria that cause Lyme. Please visit http://www.lymeticktest for more info.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dolores-Claesson/1222716302 Dolores Claesson

      Yes there are tests in Sweden and Germany and I have heard that the US Army has test kits that can detect other pathogens as well in the field.  Babesia, and all rickettsias and Bartonella strains etc. are also quite devastating.

  • Burdge52

    Another drive by article by Steere and company!
    They drop a bomb and RUNNNN as always.

  • Netizen

    Lyme Disease was a U.S. Military bio warfare experiment, done on Plum Island, gone awry.

    There is no true cure for Lyme Disease. The U.S. Government knows this, and therefore can’t claim culpability, since they’d then be liable for damages and restitution. So, “cures” got Lyme Disease get “swept under the carpet”, and the CDC and FDA can then turn a blind eye.

    • Wyrdone

      Got a citation for your wild accusation?

      • kellymbray

        He voted for Ron Paul. He doesn’t need any citations other than what Alex Jones provides him.

  • Burdge52

    WPMT FOX 43 Harrisburg Pa.
    aired this Lyme report 5 weeks ago
    My wife Joy Mandrell Burdge is featured on their news clip.
    We are mad as hell and people like Allen Steere are not helping find way to calm things down and bring help to the many thousands maybe millions that are suffering.
    people need to think outside the box when treating Lyme and tick borne illnesses.
    Allen Steere has lost that ability.
    Watch the news report it is done very well.

  • Burdge52

    Another news report from wbur news Albany NY
    Maybe 3 Million have Lyme and tick borne illnesses in  New York State and don’t even know it.
    the fighting needs to STOP and this health problem needs to be addressed NOW!!!!!


    • Burdge52

      This report was from wnyt news from Albany New York!!!!Sorry about that.

  • Sawbuzz

    I’ll take the the vaccine being I already have RA?

  • Dclaesson
  • Alexander Davis

    I predict that due to the complex nature of this infection, we will never have a safe effective vaccine.  Panelists yesterday pointed out the flaws in the previous vaccine.  Therefore we must go on the offense and get rid of the deer which brought us this plague.   In 1930 there were 300,000 deer in the US and now there are 30 million.   Dr. Thomas Mather on yesterday’s panel calculated that ticks from one deer/year produce 450,000 eggs.  That’s a lot of potential Lyme victims.  Looking at the CDC maps (2001 to 2010) showing the spread of Lyme across the country and it’s clear the situation is going to keep getting worse.   We are told to avoid places where there are deer and deer ticks but why should we have to fence ourselves in? It’s supposed to be our country.       

  • http://cxj2.myopenid.com/ A father

    This anti-vaccine thing is one of the things that happens when government agencies become perceived as corrupt, and hence, not trustworthy.  The FDA has shot itself in the foot so many times.  Its revolving door with the industries it’s supposed to regulate has essentially wiped out a large segment of society’s trust in what they say.  The CDC is only somewhat better in their record of integrity.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dolores-Claesson/1222716302 Dolores Claesson
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dolores-Claesson/1222716302 Dolores Claesson
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dolores-Claesson/1222716302 Dolores Claesson


    Concerns about the vaccine may have caused the vaccine manufacturer to take it off the market. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dolores-Claesson/1222716302 Dolores Claesson
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dolores-Claesson/1222716302 Dolores Claesson


    Isolated a protein on the Borrelia bacterium.  Want to share exactly what was in that vaccine ?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dolores-Claesson/1222716302 Dolores Claesson
  • Joan of Arc

    Will Allen Steere please disappear!?!? He’s done enough damage, hundreds of thousands are suffering, and MANY have died! And please take your crooked cronies with you!


    The “Boss” before Springsteen, Bill Chinnock commits suicide due to Lyme disease. http://www.wlbz2.com/video/110979993001/0/Lyme-disease-Terrys-story

    MSNBC reporters sister commits suicide due to Lyme disease. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/30725967/ns/health-health_care/t/all-she-lost-my-sisters-battle-lyme-disease/#.T-8lRBB5mK0

    • Poet706

       As someone who is often in places where contracting Lyme Disease is a definite possibility, Your attitude is a direct threat to my well being.  And any action on that attitude is a direct threat to me and my family.  Such should not be tolerated.

      • Scientist who reads

        Poet, you’re wrong, and Joan is right.  You should look into the literature yourself.  But I understand your confusion; this article was poorly-researched and is misleading.  It is well documented, including by Steere, that many people have a crippling sensitivity to exactly the antibodies this vaccine was designed to enhance.

        Your dog’s immune system is different than yours, which iswhy the vaccine is safe for dogs.  But the THREAT to you and your family would be the documented conflict of interest on the part of Steere and his cronies.  To keep the vaccine-motivated money flowing, they find themselves arguing that Lyme is “easy to detect, easy to treat.”  Now the actions already driven by THAT attitude are already killing people, and threaten you.

        As I say, I understand your ignorance and your confusion.  Your threats to Joan (and implicitly to me) are immature, destructive, and irresponsible.  Grow up, and do some research, and stop listening to money-grubbing frauds like Steere, and the lazy journalists who spread his lies, like WBUR.

        • kellymbray

          What are your scientific credentials?

  • p_cayer

    I was misdiagnosed for decades.  Standard two-tier testing was always negative.  When my symptoms became undeniable (MS-type symptoms, cardiac, neuro, psych, arthritic) I did my own research and diagnosed myself.  Got it confirmed by IGENEX Lab and ILADS doc.  My own mainstream PCP would have just watched me die of this disease.  When I finally confronted him and demanded to be treated for Lyme, he said, “Know what?  I think you DO have Lyme.”  He was going to send me to Yale, a bastion of Lyme denial.  No thanks.  I went to an ILADS doc for treatment.

    This pandemic is so huge, that if every person with Lyme were to be properly diagnosed and treated, our health care system would COLLAPSE.  Real estate values and tourism dollars in Northeast would PLUMMET.  Connecticut is the INSURANCE CAPITOL of the WORLD.  Insurance companies would go BANKRUPT.

    It is this reality that is keeping the government, CDC, and medical establishment from acknowledging the magnitude of the pandemic.

    People are dying.  My mother was one of them.  I estimate half my neighborhood here in CT has Lyme, most undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. Many young people in their 20′s totally disabled with “mystery” illnesses.  I have reported one doc to the State Medical Board for trying to cover-up a Lyme death.  They are investigating.

    Prepare for a medical scandal the likes of which this country has never seen.  Think Tuskegee Experiment times a MILLION.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/FMC567LV2V5THDC7AWDJZSZ3NM Alexander

      You are correct.  We need a Manhattan Project-type response before it’s too late.   On Monhegan Island Maine there was a Lyme epidemic but then they eliminated the deer and thus eliminated the deer ticks and Lyme disease. In 1930 there were 300,000 deer in the US. Now there are 30 million.  Ticks from one deer can lay 450,000 eggs per season or more.  The deer lobby blames the Lyme epidemic on the mice, but rodents can’t host the egg-laying adult deer tick.  Therefore although Monhegan Island has mice, the mice no longer have deer ticks and thus can’t infect us.  Killing the deer breaks the tick life cycle.  Other mammals such as raccoons may host the adult tick, but they are adept at grooming, ie eating the ticks.  Deer have to be drastically reduced before the tick population goes down: a Manhattan Project.     

      • mollyren

        The deer lobby?

        • Luba Petrusha

          Cervids United.

  • Robert Ilbrink

    When I lived in Austria (Europe), 20 years ago, we used to get a lime vacccination every two years (Zecken Impfung). Not sure this can not be done elsewhere?

    • Curt Nickisch

      Robert, I did too! But that’s a vaccination for a virus, a different organism. Europe also has similar illnesses to Lyme, but different bacteria. So at this point any protections against those are proprietary to Europe.

  • Joan of Arc
  • Lee Cooper


    Note the important excerpt here: ‘First, some research started to raise questions about the bacterial protein that formed the basis of the vaccine, suggesting that sensitivity to the protein might explain arthritis and other symptoms that show up in cases of chronic Lyme disease.’

    Subsequent trials disproved the link. But that didn’t matter to patient groups, who became convinced that the vaccine was responsible for causing the disease and chronic symptoms. Class-action lawsuits followed along with plenty of bad publicity.’

  • Willfinch

    We waste money spraying for mosquitos, which kills all kinds of beneficial
     insects, yet we can’t use safe permethrin to treat deer at baiting stations in MA.

    I made a treatment station, and also put out cotton balls laced with permethrin for the mice. The mice take the cotton back to their nests, which kills the tick nymphs.

  • shobud
  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_VC3ERQ7D3XGEXS3RSZ4YKEHW54 A Yahoo! user

    It’s like winning the lottery for these losers — they see an opportunity to claim injury by inventing symptoms, or even using symptoms they acquired elsewhere, and blaming the scientists and manufacturers.

    Greed knows no bounds now we all suffer.

  • Minimedic126

    It’s interesting dr steere claims to be a part of the “team” that isolated the spirochete. Last I checked, it was done on the other side of the country by Willy Burgdorfer.

  • Mcfignter

    People can get infected, treated, cured, and then get reinfected again after another tick bite.  If infection with the whole organism doesn’t confer immunity, how is the injection of part of an organism going to confer immunity?  That is what is needed if a vaccine is going to be effective.  Although dogs may receive a vaccine, there are many reports of dogs contracting Lyme disease after they have been vaccinated.  How is the vaccine helping?  I don’t see the benefit of an ineffective vaccine, but I do see many possible side effects.  More research needs to be done before a human vaccine is released again.   First of all, it needs to be proven that immunity can be obtained from the whole organism exposure.  If this does not happen, exposure to part of the organism is not going to help much.

    • Leecooper76

      That’s why medical science developes booster schedules for vaccines. It’s not a failure of the vaccine or the system, it’s just the way biology works currently. The vaccine is 80% effective in adult humans. If you think all other vaccines are 100% effective or that all vaccines are ‘one and done’ shots, you are mistaken.

    • Cuppy1

      IDIOT  !!!

  • Kannc

    There was mass hysteria and panic over swine flu vaccines a few year back.  The odds of getting it were marginal.  Lyme disease odds are greater.  I have fought a battle for 4 years that is extraordinarily difficult due to the controversy over whether late stage Lyme exists.  It’s a sad state of affairs…..

  • Rico

    It is unfortunate that this reporter did not do enough research to know that the LymeRIX vaccine was pulled not because of patient “hysteria”, but because it was problematic. It was causing Lyme like symptoms in some patients. There were some cases of this in the trials, but they were covered up, which is why the lawsuits are still alive and well. The CDC told GlaxoSmithKline that if they didn’t pull it voluntarily, they would order it pulled.

    The story also doesn’t mention that Allen Steere was the primary consultant on the vaccine and stood to make a substantial amount of money from its sales. This blatant conflict of interest needs to be considered with any statements he makes on the subject.

    • Michael Cohen


    • Brandon

      Note that part where *all symptoms resolved without treatment*. But heh, lets not throw facts around or anything.


      Growing public concerns about vaccine safety forced the FDA to re-examine the adverse reactions reported after Lyme vaccine. The FDA re-examined the published phase III trial that allowed licensing of the vaccine [20]. Significantly more vaccine recipients than controls (i.e. 26·8% vs. 8·3%) experienced local reactions, including soreness, redness, or swelling at the injection site as well as systemic symptoms such as myalgias, fever, or chills (i.e. 19·4% vs. 15·1%). These symptoms, seen with virtually all immunizations, occurred within 48 h of injection and lasted a median of 3 days. All symptoms resolved without treatment and no difference appeared in the frequency of long-term joint symptoms between the vaccine and the placebo groups (i.e. 1·3% vs. 1·2%). However, the trial followed the patients for only 1 year after LYMErix™ vaccination. This reassuring side-effect profile allowed vaccine licensure, but left open key questions about long-term effects.

  • Jonna

    The really sad thing is 1000′s may read this and give their dogs vaccines that have the potential of doing more harm than good….

    • Bitten

      If your child got this horrible disease you would want HELP. It is a horrible way to live a young life. Think before you post. Hoping you have no tick or mites in your area. You could be bite when you least expect it.
      Shame that dogs and cats get better medical care than humans.
      Posted from a mother that feels helpless to help her child.

      • Bebetawoos

        I 100% agree with you, I’m so sorry about your daughter.  It is outrageous that they have a safe vaccine for dogs and advertize constantly while so many more humans are suffering!!! If they have it for animals, why can’t they have it for us human beings??

        • Looneytick

          It is not a safe vaccine. Many of our vets in KY are not giving it because it is doing the same thing to dogs. Some were even dying for the vaccine. It is the exact same vaccine that they were giving humans.

          • VaVet

            I’ve given thousands of doses of Lyme vaccine to dogs with no problems whatsoever. This is a total myth.

          • Looneytick

            It was taken off the market due to lawsuits because it was making people sick. It is not a total myth. If your patients have arthritis, that’s Lyme. You need to do more research. You can’t always see Lyme in animals. You have to know what you are looking for.

    • Brandon

      Jonna, you are just as bad as Jenny McCarthy. The vaccine has been *proven safe* in animals, yet you sit here spouting off like you know what you’re talking about. Are you a vaccine researcher? Are you a microbiologist? No? Leave the risk determination and analysis to those with an actual education in the matter.

    • Vax_Choice_Human_Right

      good point. I heard Merck and Pfizer expect to grow their “animal health” business solely on vaccines – and the market is in the billions US$

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_VCAQ3QBZHTCY4DMTHLKZJDHAGI Herodotus

    The only way to go is to start all over again and develop an approved vaccine against lyme disease in both dogs and humans.  My veterinarian had lyme disease with very bad affects.  Veterinarians are particularly exposed to ticks that come with their patients.  Yes, the government should step in here…and now !!  

  • Giglio A

    I personally took the complete vaccine series as I lived in an area that was and is the epicenter for Lyme… Took the vaccine after having tested positive for Lyme 3 tears earlier, and received the “standard 2 weeks of antibiotics” … Bottom line is I ended up with late stage Lyme disease, diagnosed as having had Lyme for 22 years, testing revealed the strain and therefore location where infected and had been in that location 22 years earlier…

  • Jack

    There have been many emotional responses to this story that attribute hysteria or greed to those who brought lawsuits against the drug manufacturers. Thanks to Rico and Scientist who reads and many others who recognize the complexity of this problem. I wish my nephew had some way to recieve compensation for his reaction to LymeRix. It’s too late for him. Because a family member was diagnosed with Lyme disease and because he spends a lot of time in and near wooded areas, he thought he’d get the vaccine for Lyme disease in 2000. Shortly after, he began to develop severe arthritic symptoms, pain, fatigue, neurological problems, dizziness. He was afraid to go up on a ladder for his job for fear he’d fall. He was always a no-nonsense hard worker, and the frustration of these symptoms led him to countless doctors, trying to figure out what was wrong with him. This went on for years until he finally put together the clues and found a doctor who helped him confirm he had the genetic profile that should not have received the vaccine. He went back to his doctors from the past 11 years and they claim to never had heard of the problem with the vaccine. He underwent therapy for the vaccine damage, which has not been helping him at all. And no lawyer will take the matter on because they class action suits are over. He is still suffering. To imply he is greedy looking for compensation unfairly or hysterical is outrageous. Should we have a vaccine for Lyme disease? Yes! But it should be safe for all and not take the quality of living away from anyone.

  • THEGrnMtnBoy

    I was only able to have two shots. I had such a sever reaction to the 2nd shot (every symptom you can think of) that my doctor told me the 3rd one would most likely kill me. “There is no 3rd shot for you”. Not that I would have taken it. I’ve never been so sick. Before or after getting over the reaction, which took 4 days of hell.

  • Regie1002@optonline.net

    make the vaccine available because whe you get it believe me you will feel in you skin

  • Jim

    I received two of the three injections, and had absolutely now reaction whatsoever. The clinical trial data (including more than 6,000 individuals) revealed that adverse events were nearly identical between those who were vaccinated and those who received a placebo.

    • MDBritt

      Same thing here, Jim. My doctor just told me that concerns about the safety of the drug had led to its withdrawal. I didn’t realize that these “concerns” were so baseless.

      • KMDickson

        The concerns were that scientifically, OspA is a TLR2/1 agonist, and as such turns off the immune response, not to mention dumps tons of the immunosuppressive cytokine IL-10 into the system.

      • KMDickson

        OspA gave people Multiple Sclerosis – that is, it activates Epstein-Barr and causes tolerance to fungi in the blood. It was the Greatest Imitator:

    • KMDickson

      Correct, because OspA was never a vaccine. It caused immunosuppression – the exact OPPOSITE of what we think vaccines are supposed to do.

      • kellymbray

        So far all you have is an advocacy website using PubMed Index papers in a way that indicates you really are just doing a cut and paste job and you don’t understand what you are doing.. Just another antivax nutjob directly responsible for the spread of this disease. Calling the people who made this vaccine “Lyme criminals” indicates mental health issues on your part.

        • KMDickson

          I am an analytical chemist and the whistleblower. I most certainly know what I am doing. To prove it, ask any of the mass-murderers like Allen Steere who you worship what the structure of OspA is. Come back and tell us when he answers you.

  • Paratisi

    Not a cure but a MAJOR Improvement in Quality of Life! http://youtu.be/87B7QpJHKmI If you are near Vegas or Naples,Fl., you would be crazy not to try it!

  • blisterpeanuts

    The vaccine from 1998 should be made legal for humans again. Furthermore, let’s infect all the lawyers. Suddenly they’ll all be in favor of a vaccine!

    • KMDickson

      That vaccine, OspA, *gave* people a chronic Lyme-like illness, as the immunosuppressor, Pam3Cys or a triacyl lipopeptide or a TLR2-agonist. It failed 2 more times when used as HIV vaccines.

    • KMDickson

      Well, you could become chronically ill from mold exposures or you could get a tick bite or you could get the LYMErix vaccine – all the same outcome: Immunosuppression, which is the opposite of what vaccines are supposed to do.

  • Vax_Choice_Human_Right

    The Lyme vaccine: a cautionary tale

  • courageandhope

    But don’t spray with those poisonous insecticides. Then people won’t know if they have Lyme disease or problems caused by the insecticides. Plus insecticides are killing the bees, and all the toxins pile up in our bodies and in standing water. Don’t forget hats if you are in the woods, and check your dog afterwards for ticks. Is Lyme worse than it used to be, or are we losing our ability to fight off the bacteria? Is something weakening our immune system? The article is propaganda for vaccines, but that’s par for the course these days, esp. with NPR.

    • kellymbray

      That’s because NPR is science based unlike your rant. Vaccines are the greatest public health revolution ever. Responsible for saving half a billion lives

      • KMDickson

        Not all vaccines are vaccines, and not all diseases are preventable with vaccines. Just ask Anthony Fauci.

        • KMDickson

          Science is really not for emotional nutcases. Best if you, kellymbray stay out of it unless you have something scientific to say.

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