Research Article | Open Access
Volume 2024 |Article ID 0028 |

Harnessing a T1 Phage-Derived Spanin for Developing Phage-Based Antimicrobial Development

Wakana Yamashita,1,2 Shinjiro Ojima,1 Azumi Tamura,1,3 Aa Haeruman Azam,1 Kohei Kondo,1,4 Zhang Yuancheng,5 Longzhu Cui,5 Masaki Shintani,6 Masato Suzuki,4 Yoshimasa Takahashi,1,2 Koichi Watashi,1 Satoshi Tsuneda ,2,7 Kotaro Kiga 1,5,7

1Research Center for Drug and Vaccine Development, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Tokyo 162-8640, Japan
2Department of Life Science and Medical Bioscience, Waseda University, 2-2 Wakamatsu-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 162-8480, Japan
3Division of Infectious Diseases, Advanced Clinical Research Center, The Institute of Medical Science, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo 108-8639, Japan
4Antimicrobial Resistance Research Center, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Tokyo, Japan
5Division of Bacteriology, Department of Infection and Immunity, School of Medicine, Jichi Medical University, Shimotsuke-shi, Tochigi 329-0498, Japan
6Department of Engineering, Graduate School of Integrated Science and Technology, Shizuoka University, 3-5-1 Johoku, Naka-ku, Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, 432-8561, Japan
7Phage Therapy Institute, Comprehensive Research Organization, Waseda University, 2-2 Wakamatsu-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 162-8480, Japan

30 Aug 2023
27 Dec 2023
20 Mar 2024


The global increase in the prevalence of drug-resistant bacteria has necessitated the development of alternative treatments that do not rely on conventional antimicrobial agents. Using bacteriophage-derived lytic enzymes in antibacterial therapy shows promise; however, a thorough comparison and evaluation of their bactericidal efficacy are lacking. This study aimed to compare and investigate the bactericidal activity and spectrum of such lytic enzymes, with the goal of harnessing them for antibacterial therapy. First, we examined the bactericidal activity of spanins, endolysins, and holins derived from 2 Escherichia coli model phages, T1 and T7. Among these, T1-spanin exhibited the highest bactericidal activity against E. coli. Subsequently, we expressed T1-spanin within bacterial cells and assessed its bactericidal activity. T1-spanin showed potent bactericidal activity against all clinical isolates tested, including bacterial strains of 111 E. coli, 2 Acinetobacter spp., 3 Klebsiella spp., and 3 Pseudomonas aeruginosa. In contrast, T1 phage-derived endolysin showed bactericidal activity against E. coli and P. aeruginosa, yet its efficacy against other bacteria was inferior to that of T1-spanin. Finally, we developed a phage-based technology to introduce the T1-spanin gene into target bacteria. The synthesized non-proliferative phage exhibited strong antibacterial activity against the targeted bacteria. The potent bactericidal activity exhibited by spanins, combined with the novel phage synthetic technology, holds promise for the development of innovative antimicrobial agents.

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