Bacteriophages reinvented: tiny killers, life savers and detectives

Microbiology Seminar Series

  • Datum: 15.04.2024
  • Uhrzeit: 13:15
  • Vortragende(r): Prof. Dr. Martin J. Loessner
  • ETH Zürich, Institute of Food, Nutrition and Health
  • Ort: MPI for Terrestrial Microbiology
  • Raum: Lecture Hall / Hybrid
  • Gastgeber: Dr. Katharina Höfer
  • Kontakt:

Antibiotic resistance is a challenge for health care worldwide, and effective strategies to control drug-resistant bacteria are needed. While bacteriophages offer great host specificity and killing activity, their therapeutic potential is naturally limited by narrow host-ranges, insufficient antimicrobial activity, lysogeny, and rapid emergence of resistance. This can be overcome by design, engineering, assembly, and rebooting of synthetic phage genomes. We developed a bacterial L-form surrogate host platform, and use recombination-based engineering of large phage genomes supported by CRISPR-Cas based counterselection. Besides bacteriophages, another very successful approach is to harness the bacteriolytic enzymes encoded by phages, such as endolysins and depolymerases.

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