Immuno-Diagnosis of Lyme Disease


Market:  Approximately 20,000 cases of Lyme disease in humans are reported per year in the United States.  Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne disease in the US and is also a significant veterinary problem due to a high infection rate of dogs and other domestic animals in endemic regions.  The European market is equal to or greater than the US market.  Because of the shared manifestations with other disorders, the diagnostic market is not limited to Lyme disease cases, but is much larger.  There is a commercial demand for vaccines and diagnostic kits for Lyme disease, both for human and veterinary use.


Competitors and Current Problems: Lyme disease is often difficult to diagnose because of shared manifestations with other disorders.  If undetected and untreated, Lyme disease can cause life long debilitating symptoms.  Western blot and ELISA are the two most common tests for Lyme disease.  However, current Lyme disease diagnostics have proven to be unreliable.  One problem with current methods is the inaccuracy of detection during the early stages of the disease if detected early, antibiotic treatment is effective.  The earlier the treatment begins, the more effective antibiotics are in prevention of later stage complications.  Thus, there is a clear need for novel methods in the diagnosis of Lyme disease. 


The Technology: Researchers at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth ) have developed methods and compositions for the diagnosis for Lyme disease.  More specifically, immunoreactivity of patient blood or serum samples to VlsE peptides or antibodies has been discovered to be a highly sensitive diagnostic test for Lyme disease.  The UTHealth patent portfolio includes VlsE DNA, protein (full length and fragments thereof), antibodies, and diagnostic uses of VlsE peptides and antibodies.  UTHealth is offering non-exclusive licenses to this patent portfolio for use in humans.


UTHealth Ref. No.: 2003-0002
Patent Status: United States Issued Patent Nos. 7,847,084, 8,076,470, 8,283,458, 8,722,871, 9,115,193, 9,670,254  plus pending US application 15/609,188
License Available: world-wide; non-exclusive use in humans.

Patent Information:

The preceding is intended to be a non-confidential and limited description of a novel technology created at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). This promotional material is not comprehensive in scope and should not replace company’s diligence in a thorough evaluation of the technology. Please contact the Office of Technology Management for more information regarding this technology.
For Information, Contact:
Christine Weaver
Director, Licensing and New Venture Development
University of Texas Health Science Center At Houston
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