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The Season Of Ticks: Could Climate Change Worsen Lyme Disease?

In a finding that suggests how global warming could impact infectious disease, scientists from Yale University, in collaboration with other institutions, have determined that climate impacts the severity of Lyme Disease by influencing the feeding patterns of deer ticks that carry and transmit it.

Deer ticks live for two years and have three stages of life – larval, nymphal and adult. They obtain one blood meal during each stage in order to survive. If the source of the first meal (a mouse, bird or other small animal) is infected with the bacterium that causes Lyme Disease, the tick also becomes infected and passes it on to its next meal source – be it wildlife or human – in its second life stage as a nymph.

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