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An exciting new finding by. Dr. Kim Lewis of Northeastern University gives hope that Lyme disease can be potentially treated without harming the microbiome.


Global Lyme Alliance (GLA), the largest 501(c)(3) dedicated to conquering Lyme and other tick-borne diseases through research, education, and patient services, congratulates Dr. Kim Lewis of Northeastern University on the publication of his groundbreaking findings of a potential new antibiotic for the treatment of Lyme disease. His multiyear study was funded by GLA and is published in yesterday’s issue of the prestigious scientific journal Cell.

The data in this study collectively show that hygromycin A is potent and selective for Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacteria that causes Lyme disease. This research is groundbreaking because in contrast to the standard of care antibiotics, this new drug selectively targets Borrelia burgdorferi. In mice, it killed the bacteria, was well-tolerated and did not significantly affect the gut microbiome.

This is strong scientific evidence for a new antibiotic treatment that could greatly improve patient care. Hygromycin A does not kill most other bacteria, which would leave the microbiome undisturbed, meaning fewer side effects for patients. Mayla Hsu, Ph.D., GLA’s Director of Research and Science, says of the paper, “This work is a major step in developing better Lyme disease treatments, especially as we now appreciate that the gut microbiome contributes to improved patient well-being and should be protected.”

Global Lyme Alliance (GLA) is the leading 501(c)(3) dedicated to conquering Lyme disease through research, education, and patient services. GLA has gained national prominence for funding the most urgent and promising research in the field while expanding education and awareness programs for the general public and physicians. We support those around the globe needing information about tick-borne diseases, finding a Lyme treating physician, and are proud to offer the first Lyme-specific peer-to-peer mentor support program. Learn more at https://globallymealliance.org.

Read the Northeastern University press release on this study here