Steven Sutcliffe (McGill University), Michael Shamash and colleagues published a new paper in Viruses showing how common medications lead to prophage induction in human gut bacteria. They tested anti-inflammatory, chemotherapy, mild analgesic, cardiac, and antibiotic drug classes, and found that bacteria were inhibited by most of these drugs, and prophages were induced in half of those cases. They even saw that induction was species-specific (inducing prophages in Clostridium beijerinckii, Bacteroides caccae, and Bacteroides eggerthii)!
Ahmad Hassan (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and University of Guelph) and colleagues published a new review on phages as both friends and foes in therapeutic and biocontrol applications. They first detail the reasons for the antimicrobial resistance (AMR) crisis and the possible role of phages in spreading AMR, then describe the constructive applications of phages as tools in multiple fields to combat AMR.
Milan Gerovac (University of Würzburg, Germany) and colleagues published a new paper in MBio — they used Grad-seq (gradient profiling by sequencing) to get a comprehensive view of RNA and protein complexes in Pseudomonas aeruginosa under standard and phage predation conditions. They identify many new insights about phage-host interactions, new phage noncoding RNAs, and much more!
Karishma Bisht (Texas Tech University) and colleagues published a new paper in npj Biofilms and Microbiomes showing the impact of temperature-dependent phage expression on Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm formation. Their work suggests that phage proteins could be a possible therapeutic target in biofilm-associated infections.
Phage has made the Washington Post! The article, written by Daphne Miller, a clinical professor at UCSF, describes how most viruses around us are benign, while some are lifesaving. She interviews Saima Aslam, Paul Turner, and Ken Cadwell about their thoughts and work in the space. Perhaps a good one to share with your friends and family!