Temperate phages enhance pathogen fitness in chronic lung infection

Davies, EV, James, C ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0131-7988, Kukavica-Ibrulj, I, Levesque, RC, Brockhurst, MA and Winstanley, C 2016, 'Temperate phages enhance pathogen fitness in chronic lung infection' , ISME Journal, 10 , pp. 2553-2555.

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The Liverpool Epidemic Strain (LES) is a polylysogenic, transmissible strain of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, capable of superinfecting existing P. aeruginosa respiratory infections in individuals with cystic fibrosis (CF). The LES phages are highly active in the CF lung and may have a role in the competitiveness of the LES in vivo. In this study, we tested this by competing isogenic PAO1 strains that differed only by the presence or absence of LES prophages in a rat model of chronic lung infection. Lysogens invaded phage-susceptible populations, both in head-to-head competition and when invading from rare, in the spatially structured, heterogeneous lung environment. Appreciable densities of free phages in lung tissue confirmed active phage lysis in vivo. Moreover, we observed lysogenic conversion of the phage-susceptible competitor. These results suggest that temperate phages may have an important role in the competitiveness of the LES in chronic lung infection by acting as anti-competitor weapons.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: ISME Journal
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 1751-7362
Related URLs:
Funders: Wellcome Trust, Cystic Fibrosis Canada, Canadian Institute for Health Research, Medical Research Council (MRC), The University of Liverpool, Microbiology Society
Depositing User: Dr Chloe James
Date Deposited: 19 Apr 2016 12:35
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 17:47
URI: https://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/38758

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