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Lyme and Tickborne Diseases Research and Education Institute

About the Institute

The Johns Hopkins Lyme and Tickborne Diseases Research and Education Institute (LTBDI) is led by inaugural director Nicole Baumgarth, PhD, DVM. The Institute resides in the Bloomberg School’s Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology (MMI). Baumgarth leads the Institute’s research in four areas: vector/tick biology, epidemiology, microbiology, and host immune defense. The Institute focuses on research training and public outreach centered around the increasing threats of Lyme and other tickborne diseases to public health. In addition to Lyme disease, ticks play a role as carriers and reservoirs in over a dozen lesser-known diseases. Some, like Rocky Mountain spotted fever, are caused by bacteria, while others are caused by parasites or viruses. 


Leading research and education on Lyme and other tickborne diseases to advance public health 

tick image

We're Hiring: Tenure Track Faculty Position

We are seeking a candidate engaged in laboratory-based research on tickborne diseases, including but not limited to research on ticks, including tick-environment interactions, the microbiology of tickborne pathogens (including pathogen biology, genetics, pathogenesis and detection of viruses, bacteria and/or parasites that can affect public health), as well as host defense, including immunology, vaccinology and host genetic and epigenetic impacts on tickborne diseases.

Institute News

Arturo Casadevall, David Peetz, Nicole Baumgarth, Karen Peetz, Ron Daniels

Peetz Family Professor Dedication Ceremony

On September 8, 2023,  more than 100 guests attended in-person and virtually to celebrate the installation of Professor Nicole Baumgarth, PhD, DVM, as the inaugural Peetz Family Professor at the Bloomberg School.



Tick Boot Camp Podcast

Dr. Baumgarth was recently featured on the Tick Boot Camp Podcast. She and the hosts--Matt Sabatello and Rich Johannesen--discussed the immune response to Lyme and other tickborne diseases.

Steven Norris

October 19, 2023 Seminar Speaker - Steven J. Norris

Steven Norris, Distinguished Teaching Professor and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Texas McGovern Medical School will be sharing his research at a noon seminar.  The title of his talk is:   New Opportunities Provided by Continuous Culture of the 'Unculturable' syphilis spirochete, Treponema pallidum.

The seminar will be held at 12:00pm in Sheldon Hall (W1214) at the Bloomberg School of Public Health, located at 615 N Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21202.

Tickborne Diseases Research at Johns Hopkins

Johns Hopkins is home to several entities that focus on tickborne diseases research, diagnosis, and treatment. 

In addition to LTBDI at the Bloomberg School of Public Health, the Lyme and Tickborne Diseases Dashboard, led by Frank Curriero at the Johns Hopkins Spatial Science for Public Health Center, harnesses the power of geography in tickborne diseases research. 

In the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, the Sherrilyn and Ken Fisher Center for Environmental and Infectious Diseases, led by Paul Auwaerter, is dedicated to the clinical research of environmental pathogens which improve the diagnosis and treatment of these infections.   In addition, the Lyme Disease Research Center, led by John Aucott, is pioneering patient-based multidisciplinary research in all manifestations of Lyme disease.

Our Director

Nicole Baumgarth, PhD, DVM

Nicole Baumgarth, DVM, PhD, leads efforts to eliminate threats from tickborne diseases, such as Lyme. She studies why some immune responses to infections are successful and others are not. 

Professor Nicole Baumgarth at the Bloomberg School. 

Tickborne Diseases in the News

First travel-related death from rare tick-borne virus recorded in Maryland (October 9, 2023)
Ticks Are Bringing Disease to a Backyard Near You (April 12, 2023)
Lyme Isn't the Only Disease to Worry About in the Northeast, CDC Says (March 18, 2023)
How Climate Change Affects the Spread of Lyme Disease (Time, March 13, 2023)
Deer ticks are benefiting from warming winters in the Northeast. That's raising health concerns (WBUR, February 28, 2023)

WBUR (Boston, MA) 
February 28, 2023 
Deer ticks are benefiting from warming winters in the Northeast. That's raising health concerns
As winters in the region become more mild, adult deer ticks are becoming more active at a time when they’re normally dormant – causing a bigger public health risk.

U.S. Man's Death Suggests Deadly Tick Virus Is Spreading to New Regions (Gizmodo, February 24, 2023)

February 24, 2023 
U.S. Man's Death Suggests Deadly Tick Virus Is Spreading to New Regions
The rare Heartland virus likely killed a man in 2021, in the first case traced to the Maryland and Virginia area

A Tick Bite Made Them Allergic to Meat (The Atlantic, April 2022)
How to Stay Safe During Tick Season (New York Times, May 2022)

New York Times 
May 27, 2022 
How to Stay Safe During Tick Season 

Support the Lyme and Tickborne Diseases Research and Education Institute

The Institute welcomes and appreciates gifts of all kinds. Some donors choose to make a monthly contribution. Other members of our community, including those who have been impacted by Lyme and other tickborne diseases, give a one-time donation. All contributions to study and combat these vicious diseases are accepted with appreciation.  

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