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J Bacteriol. 1983 Jul; 155(1): 203–212.
PMCID: PMC217670

O-antigen conversion in Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 by bacteriophage D3.


The lysogenization of Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO by phage D3 results in derivatives which are resistant to superinfection by phage D3c by virtue of the fact that homologous phage cannot adsorb to these cells. The serologically and morphologically unrelated phage E79 showed a markedly decreased adsorption rate to the lysogen PAO(D3). Since both of these phages are lipopolysaccharide specific, these results suggested lysogenic conversion of the phage receptor. The lipopolysaccharide was extracted from strain PAO by the hot phenol-water technique, but this procedure was ineffective with PAO(D3). We developed a technique involving cold trichloroacetic acid extraction, followed by ultracentrifugation, digestion of the high-speed pellet with proteinase K, and ultimate purification on CsCl step gradients. The lipopolysaccharide from the wild type had inactivating activity against D3 and E79, whereas that from PAO(D3) inactivated neither. Chromatographic analysis indicated that the convertant lipopolysaccharide was smooth, and quantitative chemical analyses of the two preparations showed no differences in the level of the major fatty acids, amino compounds, or neutral sugars. On the other hand, sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis showed that the side chains had a decreased migration rate through the gel matrix. The application of 1H and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopic analysis revealed that the PAO side chain is chemically identical to that of serotype O:2a,d, containing 2,3-(1-acetyl-2-methyl-2-imidazolino-5,4)-2,3-dideoxy-D-mannuronic acid, 2,3-diacetamido-2,3-dideoxy-D-mannuronic acid, and 2-acetamido-2,6-dideoxy-D-galactose (D-fucosamine). The molecular basis of the conversion event was (i) the introduction of an acetyl group into position 4 of the fucosamine residue and a change in the bonding between trisaccharide repeating units from alpha 1 leads to 4 to beta 1 leads to 4.

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