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Environ Microbiol. 2009 Nov;11(11):2874-83. doi: 10.1111/j.1462-2920.2009.02030.x. Epub 2009 Aug 12.

Comparative analysis of the widespread and conserved PB1-like viruses infecting Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

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Division of Gene Technology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Kasteelpark Arenberg 21, Leuven, Belgium.


We examined the genetic diversity of lytic Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteriophage PB1 and four closely related phages (LBL3, LMA2, 14-1 and SN) isolated throughout Europe. They all encapsulate linear, non-permuted genomes between 64 427 and 66 530 bp within a solid, acid-resistant isometric capsid (diameter: 74 nm) and carry non-flexible, contractile tails of approximately 140 nm. The genomes are organized into at least seven transcriptional blocks, alternating on both strands, and encode between 88 (LBL3) and 95 (LMA2) proteins. Their virion particles are composed of at least 22 different proteins, which were identified using mass spectrometry. Post-translational modifications were suggested for two proteins, and a frameshift hotspot was identified within ORF42, encoding a structural protein. Despite large temporal and spatial separations between phage isolations, very high sequence similarity and limited horizontal gene transfer were found between the individual viruses. These PB1-like viruses constitute a new genus of environmentally very widespread phages within the Myoviridae.

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