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1.  Genome analysis of the staphylococcal temperate phage DW2 and functional studies on the endolysin and tail hydrolase 
Bacteriophage  2014;4:e28451.
This study describes the genome of temperate Siphoviridae phage DW2, which is routinely propagated on Staphylococcus aureus DPC5246. The 41941 bp genome revealed an open reading frame (ORF1) which has a high level of homology with members of the resolvase subfamily of site-specific serine recombinase, involved in chromosomal integration and excision. In contrast, the majority of staphylococcal phages reported to date encode tyrosine recombinases. Two putative genes encoded by phage DW2 (ORF15 and ORF24) were highly homologous to the NWMN0273 and NWMN0280 genes encoding virulence factors carried on the genome of ϕNM4, a prophage in the genome of S. aureus Newman. Phage DW2 also encodes proteins highly homologous to two well-characterized Staphylococcus aureus pathogenicity island derepressors encoded by the staphylococcal helper phage 80α indicating that it may similarly act as a helper phage for mobility of pathogenicity islands in S. aureus. This study also focused on the enzybiotic potential of phage DW2. The structure of the putative endolysin and tail hydrolase were investigated and used as the basis for a cloning strategy to create recombinant peptidoglycan hydrolyzing proteins. After overexpression in E. coli, four of these proteins (LysDW2, THDW2, CHAPE1-153, and CHAPE1-163) were demonstrated to have hydrolytic activity against peptidoglycan of S. aureus and thus represent novel candidates for exploitation as enzybiotics.
doi:10.4161/bact.28451
PMCID: PMC4124061  PMID: 25105056
bacteriophage; Staphylococcus; endolysin; virion-associated peptidoglycan hydrolase; virulence; serine recombinase
2.  The truncated phage lysin CHAPk eliminates Staphylococcus aureus in the nares of mice 
Bioengineered Bugs  2010;1(6):404-407.
The endolysin LysK derived from staphylococcal phage K has previously been shown to have two enzymatic domains, one of which is an N-acetylmuramoyl-L-alanine amidase and the other a cysteine/histidine-dependant amidohydrolase/peptidase designated CHAPk. The latter, when cloned as a single-domain truncated enzyme, is conveniently overexpressed in a highly-soluble form. This enzyme was shown to be highly active in vitro against live cell suspensions of S. aureus. In the current study, the IVIS imaging system was used to demonstrate the effective elimination of a lux labeled S. aureus from the nares of BALB/c mice.
doi:10.4161/bbug.1.6.13422
PMCID: PMC3056090  PMID: 21468207
Staphylococcus; decolonization; lysin; bacteriophage; nasal
3.  Gene encoded antimicrobial peptides, a template for the design of novel anti-mycobacterial drugs 
Bioengineered Bugs  2010;1(6):408-412.
Nisin A is the most widely characterized lantibiotic investigated to date. It represents one of the many antimicrobial peptides which have been the focus of much interest as potential therapeutic agents. This has resulted in the search for novel lantibiotics and more commonly, the engineering of novel variants from existing peptides with a view to increasing their activity, stability and solubility.
The aim of this study was to compare the activities of nisin A and novel bioengineered hinge derivatives, nisin S, nisin T and nisin V. The microtitre alamar blue assay (MABA) was employed to identify the enhanced activity of these novel variants against M. tuberculosis (H37Ra), M. kansasii (CIT11/06), M. avium subsp. hominissuis (CIT05/03) and M. avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP) (ATCC 19698). All variants displayed greater anti-mycobacterial activity than nisin A. Nisin S was the most potent variant against M. tuberculosis, M. kansasii and M. avium subsp. hominissuis, retarding growth by a maximum of 29% when compared with nisin A. Sub-species variations of inhibition were also observed with nisin S reducing growth of Mycobacterium avium subsp. hominissuis by 28% and Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis by 19% and nisin T contrastingly reducing growth of MAP by 27% and MAC by 16%.
Nisin S, nisin T and nisin V are potent novel anti-mycobacterial compounds, which have the capacity to be further modified, potentially generating compounds with additional beneficial characteristics. This is the first report to demonstrate an enhancement of efficacy by any bioengineered bacteriocin against mycobacteria.
doi:10.4161/bbug.1.6.13642
PMCID: PMC3056091  PMID: 21468208
mycobacteria; nisin variants; alamar blue; peptide engineering; lantibiotic; bacteriocin

Results 1-3 (3)