Event Title

Host Range Investigations of Novel Bacteriophages

Poster Number

107

Session Title

Biology and Biomedical Research

Document Type

Poster Presentation

Faculty Mentor

Kristi Westover, Ph.D., and Victoria Frost, Ph.D.

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Department of Biology

Description

Bacteriophages are viruses that infect bacterial cells, using them as hosts to express their genetic material and replicate. Some bacteriophages use a specific strain of bacterial host for this procedure, while others are less host-specific. This study aims to help understand this area of phage—bacteria interaction by investigating the ability of bacteriophages to replicate in alternative hosts. Bacteriophages originally isolated from Microbacterium foliorum were tested for their ability to infect and lyse Microbacterium testaceum, Microbacterium paraoxydans, Microbacterium liquefaciens, and Mycobacteria smegmatis. Spot titer assays demonstrated plaque formations on alternative hosts by two of the 16 phages (MonChoix and Sirkeiram). Three of the phages (Aries55, BravoCanis and Iann) were able to infect Mycobacteria smegmatis. In addition, two novel phages (Ixel and Nebulous) were isolated from the bacterial host M. liquefaciens. Using M. liquefaciens as the host, the infective abilities of Ixel and Nebulous were compared to those of MonChoix and Sirkeiram. The phenotypic measure of infectivity is termed Efficiency of Plating (EOP) and for both the M. foliorum isolated phages, the EOP was less (<1) when compared to the host phages. It is likely that the expression of particular genes in the genomes of phage and bacterial host is able to influence this phenomenon. A number of the phage genomes have been annotated. Genetic comparison and further testing phenotypically, will help elucidate whether specific, present genes function to enable phage to use a wide host range.

Previously Presented/Performed?

Association of Southeastern Biologists (ASB) Annual Meeting, Jacksonville, Florida, March 2020; Sixth Annual Showcase of Undergraduate Research and Creative Endeavors (SOURCE), Winthrop University, April 2020

Grant Support?

Supported by an SC INBRE grant from the National Institute for General Medical Sciences (NIH-NIGMS)

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Apr 24th, 12:00 AM

Host Range Investigations of Novel Bacteriophages

Bacteriophages are viruses that infect bacterial cells, using them as hosts to express their genetic material and replicate. Some bacteriophages use a specific strain of bacterial host for this procedure, while others are less host-specific. This study aims to help understand this area of phage—bacteria interaction by investigating the ability of bacteriophages to replicate in alternative hosts. Bacteriophages originally isolated from Microbacterium foliorum were tested for their ability to infect and lyse Microbacterium testaceum, Microbacterium paraoxydans, Microbacterium liquefaciens, and Mycobacteria smegmatis. Spot titer assays demonstrated plaque formations on alternative hosts by two of the 16 phages (MonChoix and Sirkeiram). Three of the phages (Aries55, BravoCanis and Iann) were able to infect Mycobacteria smegmatis. In addition, two novel phages (Ixel and Nebulous) were isolated from the bacterial host M. liquefaciens. Using M. liquefaciens as the host, the infective abilities of Ixel and Nebulous were compared to those of MonChoix and Sirkeiram. The phenotypic measure of infectivity is termed Efficiency of Plating (EOP) and for both the M. foliorum isolated phages, the EOP was less (<1) when compared to the host phages. It is likely that the expression of particular genes in the genomes of phage and bacterial host is able to influence this phenomenon. A number of the phage genomes have been annotated. Genetic comparison and further testing phenotypically, will help elucidate whether specific, present genes function to enable phage to use a wide host range.