Tuesday, April 9, 2024

A protein found in human sweat may protect against Lyme disease

In this article written by Anne Trafton, the author discusses how researchers have discovered a protein in human sweat that can protect against Lyme disease. They hope to use this discovery to develop skin creams to prevent the disease or treat infections that don't respond to antibiotics.

The researchers ran a genome-wide association study to find genetic markers of disease susceptibility. They discovered SCGB1D2, a secretoglobin primarily produced by sweat glands. They exposed SCGB1D2 and a mutated version of the protein to the bacteria that causes Lyme disease and discovered the unmutated version significantly inhibited its growth. They then injected mice with the bacteria, along with the mutated and unmutated protein. The mice with the unmutated protein did not become infected, while the ones with the mutated proteins did.

I found this article to be quite interesting. I was exposed to Lyme disease as a kid, so seeing new research about it is intriguing. I do think the notion of a preventative cream, though interesting, is unrealistic. I'm unsure how many people would routinely use a cream whose sole purpose is to help prevent against Lyme disease. I think a better course of action would be to add it to insect repellants. I do however hope the cream will be able to help people with antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Living with Lyme disease is incredibly difficult. 

Article: A protein found in human sweat may protect against Lyme disease

Additional Link: A protein found in sweat may protect people from Lyme disease


  1. This was very interesting to read especially given that their approach is to have patients use a cream. I do see your point on how depending on the person it could become an issue to routinely use a cream but I also see how using a cream may be a lot easier. Using a cream could be part of their morning or night routine but I would be interested in learning other alternatives.

  2. I found this to be incredibly interesting! As someone who spends a lot of time outdoors, Ticks and Lyme disease is something that is always on my mind. I agree with your idea on possibly putting this protein in insect repellent as I think that it would ensure a wider adoption of this successful preventive measure. I'm glad to see further advancements in preventing Lyme disease.

  3. Hi Giselle,
    I think this is a great article and I'm glad you shared it! I often worry about ticks and getting infected with Lyme disease because I love to run on trails. Seeing a study like this makes me wonder if they can advance their research and possibly create a vaccine for Lyme disease. If so, that would be great for anyone who works outdoors in woodland areas or those who live in fear of the disease. Nice work!