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J Dairy Res. 1992 Aug;59(3):349-57.

Different bacteriophage resistance mechanisms in Streptococcus salivarius subsp. thermophilus.

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  • 1Laboratoire de Génétique et Microbiologie, Faculté des Sciences, Université Nancy I, Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy, France.


Streptococcus salivarius subsp. thermophilus strain NST5 exhibited a temperature-dependent defence mechanism against the virulent bacteriophages phi B1.2 and phi A1.1. It was active at 42 degrees C but not at 30 degrees C as demonstrated by a significant increase of both plaque size and efficiency of plaquing. This defence mechanism did not affect host-dependent phage replication and did not interfere with phage adsorption to NST5. These results suggest that it interfered with phage development. The phages phi T33, phi T58, phi D1, phi T21 and phi T9, belonging to the same phage type as phi B1.2, were examined for their ability to infect NST3 and NST5. Restriction modification systems of different specificity were detected in NST3 and NST5; host-dependent phage replication was detected at 30 and 42 degrees C; an abortive defence mechanism was detected in NST5 which was active at 42 degrees C, but not 30 degrees C, and was independent of restriction modification action or interference with phage adsorption. Our investigations of phage-host interactions showed that the two Str. salivarius subsp. thermophilus strains studied avoided attack by related bacteriophages by evolving at least three different resistance systems.

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