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Characterization of 4 T1-like lytic bacteriophages that lyse Shiga-toxin Escherichia coli O157:H7

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Bacteriophages are associated with reduced fecal shedding of Shiga-toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157:H7 (STEC O157:H7) in cattle. Four phages exhibiting activity against 12 of 14 STEC O157:H7 strains, representing 11 common phage types, were isolated. Phages did not lyse non-O157 E. coli, with 11 of the 12 STEC strains exhibiting extreme susceptibility (average multiplicity of infection (MOI) = 0.0003−0.0007). All phages had icosahedral heads with tapered, noncontractile tails, a morphology indicative of T1-like Siphoviridae. Genome size of all phages was ∼44 kb, but EcoRІ or HindIII digestion profiles differed among phages. Based on restriction enzyme digestion profiles, phages AHP24, AHS24, and AHP42 were more related (66.7%−82.4%) to each other than to AKS96, while AHP24 and AHS24, isolated from the same feedlot pen, exhibited the highest identity (88.9%−92.3%). Phages AHP24 and AHS24 exhibited the broadest host range and strongest lytic activity against STEC O157:H7, making them strong candidates for biocontrol of this bacterium in cattle.
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Keywords: Escherichia coli O157:H7; STEC; bacteriophage T1; bactériophage T1; biocontrol; biocontrôle; bovin; cattle

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Lethbridge Research Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lethbridge, AB T1J 4B1, Canada. 2: Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, Agriculture Centre, Lethbridge, AB T1J 4V6, Canada. 3: Département de microbiologie, Faculté de médecine, Université Laval, Québec, QC G1K 7P4, Canada.

Publication date: July 12, 2012

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