ARCHIVES OF VIROLOGY, vol.167, no.5, pp.1269-1284, 2022 (SCI-Expanded)
The use of phage and phage-based products for the prevention and treatment of bee disease is one of the promising natural alternatives to chemical or antibiotic treatments in beekeeping. A novel lysogenic bacteriophage, phage Pd22F (vB_PlaM_Pd22F), was isolated from Paenibacillus dendritiformis by the prophage induction method. This phage, which is capable of infecting Paenibacillus larvae and P. dendritiformis strains, was characterized by microbiological and comparative genomic analysis. Transmission electron microscopy images showed that phage Pd22F had the morphology of a myovirus. Whole-genome sequencing results showed that vB_Pla M_Pd22F has an 86,388-bp linear dsDNA genome with a GC content of 50.68%. This genome has 124 coding sequences (CDSs), 53% of which encode functionally unknown proteins and 57 of which encode proteins that show similarity to known proteins. In addition, one tRNA gene was found. The phage Pd22F genome does not contain any antimicrobial resistance genes. The similarity between the genome sequence of phage Pd22F and the whole genome sequences of other Paenibacillus phages available in the NCBI Virus Database was found to be below 50% (42%), indicating that phage Pd22F differs greatly from previously characterized phages at the DNA level. The results of comparative genomics and phylogenetic analysis revealed that Pd22F is a new phage belonging to the family Myoviridae, order Caudovirales. This is the first report of genomic and morphological characterization of a Paenibacillus dendritiformis prophage.