6 thoughts on “P26 – Huyvaert

  1. Hello!

    I had a question about the possible broader implications that the results of Ditsy being part of Cluster A. What can bacteriophages in this cluster do specifically? Could Ditsy be used as a treatment of some sort?

    1. Cluster A phages are the most common in the PhagesDB bacteriophage database that we submitted Ditsy to. This cluster is also primarily made up of temperate mycobacteriophages, similar to our phage. This implies that many of these phage cannot be used directly for phage therapy, but instead need to undergo genetic treatment to deactivate the repressor proteins for the phage to enter the lytic cycle. If Ditsy was genetically modified into a lytic phage, she could absolutely be used in phage therapy if she matches a host bacteria that is antibiotic resistant.

  2. Apart from the future direction listed, what other experiments can be done to fully understand how Ditsy function (what happens when there is an altered sequence in Ditsy gene)? How can Ditsy be effective for phage therapy?

    1. In the future, following genome sequencing, we could attempt to modify Ditsy so her repressor proteins are deactivated, and thus she will enter the lytic life cycle. This would allow her to be effectively used in phage therapy. We could conduct clinical trials of Ditsy’s effectiveness with other bacteria, such as M. tuberculosis or M. abcessus to see if she has a broad enough host range to infect these bacteria. Since we do not yet know Ditsy’s full host range, we cannot determine her effectiveness in phage therapy currently.

  3. Great presentation and great poster! Similar to Stephanie, do cluster A phages contain a specfic conserved domains? Is there anything else that catrogerizes a cluster A phage besides the restriction enzymes?

    1. Yes, Cluster A phage contain the same proteins and domains that are found in many other phages in different clusters. This is because certain functions are needed for the phage to complete its job. Every phage contains a capsid, lysins, DNA polymerase, tail proteins, and other necessary components. Since Cluster A phage in particular are usually temperate, most of them contain activated repressor proteins that function to repress the lytic cycle. In a general sense, Cluster A phage have their proteins in similar locations, and this is another reason why they are categorized in the same cluster.

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