Efficient dilution-to-extinction isolation of novel virus–host model systems for fastidious heterotrophic bacteria

Buchholz, HH, Michelsen, ML, Bolaños, LM, Browne, E, Allen, MJ and Temperton, B 2021 Efficient dilution-to-extinction isolation of novel virus–host model systems for fastidious heterotrophic bacteria. The ISME Journal. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41396-020-00872-z

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41396-020-00872-z


Microbes and their associated viruses are key drivers of biogeochemical processes in marine and soil biomes. While viruses of phototrophic cyanobacteria are well-represented in model systems, challenges of isolating marine microbial heterotrophs and their viruses have hampered experimental approaches to quantify the importance of viruses in nutrient recycling. A resurgence in cultivation efforts has improved the availability of fastidious bacteria for hypothesis testing, but this has not been matched by similar efforts to cultivate their associated bacteriophages. Here, we describe a high-throughput method for isolating important virus–host systems for fastidious heterotrophic bacteria that couples advances in culturing of hosts with sequential enrichment and isolation of associated phages. Applied to six monthly samples from the Western English Channel, we first isolated one new member of the globally dominant bacterial SAR11 clade and three new members of the methylotrophic bacterial clade OM43. We used these as bait to isolate 117 new phages, including the first known siphophage-infecting SAR11, and the first isolated phage for OM43. Genomic analyses of 13 novel viruses revealed representatives of three new viral genera, and infection assays showed that the viruses infecting SAR11 have ecotype�specific host ranges. Similar to the abundant human-associated phage ɸCrAss001, infection dynamics within the majority of isolates suggested either prevalent lysogeny or chronic infection, despite a lack of associated genes, or host phenotypic bistability with lysis putatively maintained within a susceptible subpopulation. Broader representation of important virus–host systems in culture collections and genomic databases will improve both our understanding of virus–host interactions, and accuracy of computational approaches to evaluate ecological patterns from metagenomic data.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Divisions: Plymouth Marine Laboratory > Science Areas > Marine Biochemistry and Observations
Depositing User: S Hawkins
Date made live: 14 May 2021 08:11
Last Modified: 14 May 2021 08:11
URI: https://plymsea.ac.uk/id/eprint/9216

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