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Pseudotyping bacteriophage P2 tail fibers to extend the host range for biomedical applications

Cunliffe, Tabitha G., Parker, Alan L. ORCID: and Jaramillo, Alfonso 2022. Pseudotyping bacteriophage P2 tail fibers to extend the host range for biomedical applications. ACS Synthetic Biology 11 (10) , pp. 3207-3215. 10.1021/acssynbio.1c00629

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Bacteriophages (phages) represent powerful potential treatments against antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria represent a significant threat to global health, with an estimated 70% of infection-causing bacteria being resistant to one or more antibiotics. Developing novel antibiotics against the limited number of cellular targets is expensive and time-consuming, and bacteria can rapidly develop resistance. While bacterial resistance to phage can evolve, bacterial resistance to phage does not appear to spread through lateral gene transfer, and phage may similarly adapt through mutation to recover infectivity. Phages have been identified for all known bacteria, allowing the strain-selective killing of pathogenic bacteria. Here, we re-engineered the Escherichia coli phage P2 to alter its tropism toward pathogenic bacteria. Chimeric tail fibers formed between P2 and S16 genes were designed and generated through two approaches: homology- and literature-based. By presenting chimeric P2:S16 fibers on the P2 particle, our data suggests that the resultant phages were effectively detargeted from the native P2 cellular target, lipopolysaccharide, and were instead able to infect via the proteinaceous receptor, OmpC, the natural S16 receptor. Our work provides evidence that pseudotyping P2 is feasible and can be used to extend the host range of P2 to alternative receptors. Extension of this work could produce alternative chimeric tail fibers to target pathogenic bacterial threats. Our engineering of P2 allows adsorption through a heterologous outer-membrane protein without culturing in its native host, thus providing a potential means of engineering designer phages against pathogenic bacteria from knowledge of their surface proteome.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Publisher: American Chemical Society
ISSN: 2161-5063
Funders: BBSRC, Medical Research Council
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 10 September 2022
Date of Acceptance: 25 August 2022
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2023 17:36

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