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Production of Bacteriophage by Temperature-Sensitive Sporulation Mutants of Bacillus cereus T1

By G. N. Stelma and H. L. Sadoff


Five temperature-sensitive sporulation mutants of Bacillus cereus T have been isolated. These mutants are blocked at stage 0 of sporulation at the restrictive temperature (37 C) but are able to sporulate at nearly normal frequencies at the permissive temperature (26 C). A bacteriophage that forms a stable lysogen in the parent strain is induced at increased frequencies in the mutants. This induction is accompanied, in some of the mutants, by a reduction in immunity to the phage. Revertants, selected for their ability to sporulate normally at both temperatures, lose their ability to produce high titers of the phage. In addition to this lytic phage, an apparently defective phage has been found in lysates of the mutants. Strains cured of the plaque-forming phage still carry the defective phage. Comparisons of physical and biological properties of the plaque-forming phage with those of the two Bacillus cereus phages most similar to it have shown that this phage is not identical to either of them. The maximal titer of phage produced in cultures of the parent strain is about 103 plaque-forming units (PFU) per ml at both temperatures. The maximal titers of phage produced by the mutant are 4 × 109 PFU/ml at 37 C and 7 × 108 PFU/ml at 26 C. Both mutant and parent strains release over 90% of the phage they produce after the onset of stationary phase

Topics: Genetics and Molecular Biology
Year: 1973
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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