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  1. Rebecca’s project was about how Lyme disease affects the joints. Lyme disease is caused by the bacteria B. burgdorferi. This bacteria is carried by black legged ticks and is transmitted to humans through their bite. If the tick is on a person for more than twenty four hours, then the bacteria can be transmitted to that person. The bacteria is transferred from the tick to the human through the tick’s bite. If a tick carrying the bacteria transmits it to a person, the location of the tick’s bite will be marked by a red bull’s eye shaped rash on the skin. Lyme disease causes flu-like symptoms in the skin, nervous system, heart, and joints. Rebecca’s project focuses specifically on how the bacteria B. burgdorferi harms the joints. The bacteria causes inflammation. In synovial joints, this causes the synovial tissue around the joint capsule to become inflamed, decreasing the space in and around the joint. This causes pain and swelling in the joint. These symptoms are worse in large joints. The knee joint is especially vulnerable to pain and inflammation.

    Rebecca decorated cake pops to show the process of Lyme disease infection, from a tick biting a human, to the inflammation of a joint. The first cake pops show a tick biting a human. The next one shows the B. burgdorferi bacteria. The fourth cake pop shows an example of what the bull’s eye shaped rash characteristic of Lyme disease looks like. The fifth cake pop depicts the bacteria entering a person’s bloodstream. The last cake pop shows the joint inflammation of a person infected with Lyme disease.

    Honor Fraley

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