7 thoughts on “P33 – Goodwin

  1. Is it possible that bacteriophages could end up targeting human cells, such as by random chance or a human cell being a viable cell to hijack

    1. Eukaryotic cells (including human cells) lack the receptors bacteriophages use to infect bacteria, so it is unlikely they could infect humans. In addition, phages are sometimes genetically modified to limit any harmful effects they may possess. For example, in temperate phages, proteins and enzymes that are used to integrate phage DNA into bacterial DNA are removed so there is no change of phage DNA becoming integrated into our genomes.

  2. What was purpose of using electron microscopy to image the phage in your sample ?

    1. This allowed us to see what our phage looked like! We were able to identify our phage as a siphoviridae phage from these pictures.

    1. Thank you for watching! M. smegmatis was used because it belongs to the same family as M. tuberculosis. However, unlike tuberculosis, M. smegmatis is safe to use in the lab. Using a bacteria related to something more dangerous could allow us to safely identify phages that may kill dangerous stains, since the two bacteria are related. Our hope is that by identifying a phage that infects M. smeg, we also found a phage that could infect M. tuberculosis.

    2. Thank you! We used M. smegmatis because it is closely related to M. tuberculosis (they are both Mycobacterium). Because they are closely related, our hope is that a phage that can infect one can also infect the other. M. smeg is safe for laboratory use as it doesn’t negatively impact humans, which was why we used it in our experiments.

Leave a Reply