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Eur Biophys J. 2015 Sep;44(6):437-46. doi: 10.1007/s00249-015-1044-7. Epub 2015 Jun 5.

A novel and highly specific phage endolysin cell wall binding domain for detection of Bacillus cereus.

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Department of Food and Animal Biotechnology, Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, Center for Food and Bioconvergence, Research Institute of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Seoul National University, Seoul, 151-742, Korea.


Rapid, specific and sensitive detection of pathogenic bacteria is crucial for public health and safety. Bacillus cereus is harmful as it causes foodborne illness and a number of systemic and local infections. We report a novel phage endolysin cell wall-binding domain (CBD) for B. cereus and the development of a highly specific and sensitive surface plasmon resonance (SPR)-based B. cereus detection method using the CBD. The newly discovered CBD from endolysin of PBC1, a B. cereus-specific bacteriophage, provides high specificity and binding capacity to B. cereus. By using the CBD-modified SPR chips, B. cereus can be detected at the range of 10(5)-10(8) CFU/ml. More importantly, the detection limit can be improved to 10(2) CFU/ml by using a subtractive inhibition assay based on the pre-incubation of B. cereus and CBDs, removal of CBD-bound B. cereus, and SPR detection of the unbound CBDs. The present study suggests that the small and genetically engineered CBDs can be promising biological probes for B. cereus. We anticipate that the CBD-based SPR-sensing methods will be useful for the sensitive, selective, and rapid detection of B. cereus.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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