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Molecular characterization and lytic activities of Streptococcus agalactiae bacteriophages and determination of lysogenic-strain features

Abstract : The application of mitomycin C induction to 114 genetically diverse Streptococcus agalactiae strains generated 36 phage suspensions. On electron microscopy of the phage suspensions, it was possible to assign the phages to the Siphoviridae family, with three different morphotypes (A, B, and C). Phage genetic diversity was evaluated by a PCR-based multilocus typing method targeting key modules located in the packaging, structural, host lysis, lysogeny, replication, and transcriptional regulation clusters and in the integrase genes and by DNA digestion with EcoRI, HindIII, and ClaI. Thirty-three phages clustering in six distantly related molecular phage groups (I to VI) were identified. Each molecular group was morphotype specific except for morphotype A phages, which were found in five of the six phage groups. The various phage groups defined on the basis of molecular group and morphotype had specific lytic activities, suggesting that each recognized particular host cell targets and had particular lytic mechanisms. Comparison of the characteristics of lysogenic and propagating strains showed no difference in the serotype or clonal complex (CC) identified by multilocus sequence typing. However, all the lysogenic CC17 and CC19 strains presented catabolic losses due to a lack of catabolic decay of DL-alpha-glycerol-phosphate substrates (CC17) and of alpha-D-glucose-1-phosphate (CC19). Moreover, the phages from CC17 lysogenic strains displayed lytic replication in bacterial hosts from all S. agalactiae phylogenetic lineages other than CC23, whereas phages obtained from non-CC17 lysogenic strains lysed bacteria of similar evolutionary origin. Our findings suggest that the adaptive evolution of S. agalactiae exposed the bacteria of this species to various phage-mediated horizontal gene transfers, which may have affected the fitness of the more virulent clones.
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Contributor : Violaine Garguilo Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, January 19, 2011 - 10:46:36 AM
Last modification on : Friday, August 5, 2022 - 3:42:17 AM

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Anne-Sophie Domelier, Nathalie van Der Mee-Marquet, Pierre-Yves Sizaret, Geneviève Héry-Arnaud, Marie-Frédérique Lartigue, et al.. Molecular characterization and lytic activities of Streptococcus agalactiae bacteriophages and determination of lysogenic-strain features. Journal of Bacteriology, 2009, 191 (15), pp.4776-4785. ⟨10.1128/JB.00426-09⟩. ⟨hal-00557529⟩



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