Designing probiotic therapies with broad-spectrum activity against a wildlife pathogen

Antwis, RE ORCID:, Harrison, XA, Sewell, T and Fisher, M 2020, 'Designing probiotic therapies with broad-spectrum activity against a wildlife pathogen' , Frontiers in Microbiology, 10 , p. 3134.

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Host-associated microbes form an important component of immunity that protect against infection by pathogens. Treating wild individuals with these protective microbes, known as probiotics, can reduce rates of infection and disease in both wild and captive settings. However, the utility of probiotics for tackling wildlife disease requires that they offer consistent protection across the broad genomic variation of the pathogen that hosts can encounter in natural settings. Here we develop multi-isolate probiotic consortia with the aim of effecting broad-spectrum inhibition of growth of the lethal amphibian pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) when tested against nine Bd isolates from two distinct lineages. Though we achieved strong growth inhibition between 70 and 100% for seven Bd isolates, two isolates appeared consistently resistant to inhibition, irrespective of probiotic strategy employed. We found no evidence that genomic relatedness of the chytrid predicted similarity of inhibition scores, nor that increasing the genetic diversity of the bacterial consortia could offer stronger inhibition of pathogen growth, even for the two resistant isolates. Our findings have important consequences for the application of probiotics to mitigate wildlife diseases in the face of extensive pathogen genomic variation.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences > Ecosystems and Environment Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: Frontiers in Microbiology
Publisher: Frontiers Media
ISSN: 1664-302X
Related URLs:
Funders: University of Salford, Institute of Zoology Research Fellowship, Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
Depositing User: Dr Rachael Antwis
Date Deposited: 22 Jan 2020 14:09
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 03:53

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