Phage biology and biocontrol - The PHAGEBio group at University of Copenhagen
We study the complex interactions between bacteria and phages - the natural predators of bacteria - to elucidate novel mechanisms of evolution and co-existence of phages and bacteria. Based on this understanding, we work with companies to develop efficient phage solutions to control pathogenic bacteria and take innovative approaches to design new phage-derived antimicrobials from phage proteins.
“By establishing large phage and bacterial collections, we are not only able find the most efficient phages for therapy in clinical settings or biocontrol in food production, we can also understand the diversity of phages and how they influence bacteria in their natural niches” says Professor and group leader Lone Brøndsted.
Bacteriophages are predators of bacteria that specifically infect and kill their host bacteria. Therefore, phages select for new genetic and phenotypic bacterial variants, thereby influencing the biology and evolution of bacteria. Our goal is to understand the consequences of such microbial interactions by elucidating the underlying molecular mechanism of phage-bacteria interactions. In addition, we aim to exploit the ability of phages and their enzymes to kill bacteria important for the food industry, in animal production and human infections.
The research of PHAGEBio focus on understanding the host range of phages, identification of phage receptor binding proteins, novel phage resistance mechanisms and the counter-acting strategies of developed by phages as well as innovative approaches for designing novel phage-derived antimicrobials.
Discovery of two genetic groups of Campylobacter phages recognizing either the capsular polysaccharide or the flagella as receptors. http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0116287
Identification of host range determinants of Salmonella phages using a novel holistic approach. https://doi.org/10.1111/1462-2920.14597
Innolysins, a novel concept for engineering endolysins to kill Gram-negative bacteria combining the enzymatic activity of endolysins with the binding capacity of phage receptor binding proteins. https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/408948v1