Innate and acquired bacteriophage-mediated immunity

Jeremy J Barr, Merry Youle, Forest Rohwer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

We recently described a novel, non-host-derived, phage-mediated immunity active at mucosal surfaces, the main site of pathogen entry in metazoans. In that work, we showed that phage T4 adheres to mucus glycoproteins via immunoglobulin-like domains displayed on its capsid. This adherence positions the phage in mucus surfaces where they are more likely to encounter and kill bacteria, thereby benefiting both the phage and its metazoan host. We presented this phage-metazoan symbiosis based on an exclusively lytic model of phage infection. Here we extend our bacteriophage adherence to mucus (BAM) model to consider the undoubtedly more complex dynamics in vivo. We hypothesize how mucus-adherent phages, both lytic and temperate, might impact the commensal microbiota as well as protect the metazoan epithelium from bacterial invasion. We suggest that BAM may provide both an innate and an acquired antimicrobial immunity.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere25857
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalBacteriophage
Volume3
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • phage
  • bacteriophage
  • immune system
  • mucus
  • lysogen
  • lytic

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