Department or Program

Biological Chemistry


Lyme disease, caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi, is the most common vector-born disease in the United States. The bacteria cycles between tick and mammalian hosts, each with very different cellular environments. To maintain infection, B. burgdorferi must be able to rapidly alter its gene expression. We hypothesize that some of this alteration takes place post-transcriptionally through mRNA decay by ribonucleases. However, B. burgdorferi has limited subsets of ribonucleases, and subsequently, slow rates and variable patterns of mRNA decay. This study seeks to purify and characterize ribonucleases in B. burgdorferi to understand their activity and function, as they may serve as good targets for antibiotic development.

Level of Access

Restricted: Embargoed [Bates Community After Expiration]

First Advisor

Schlax, Paula

Date of Graduation


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Number of Pages



Available to Bates Community via local IP address or Bates login on Thursday, May 03, 2029.