Microbial Arsenal of Antiviral Defenses – Part I

Artem B. Isaev, Olga S. Musharova, Konstantin V. Severinov

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Abstract: Bacteriophages or phages are viruses that infect bacterial cells (for the scope of this review we will also consider viruses that infect Archaea). Constant threat of phage infection is a major force that shapes evolution of the microbial genomes. To withstand infection, bacteria had evolved numerous strategies to avoid recognition by phages or to directly interfere with phage propagation inside the cell. Classical molecular biology and genetic engineering have been deeply intertwined with the study of phages and host defenses. Nowadays, owing to the rise of phage therapy, broad application of CRISPR-Cas technologies, and development of bioinformatics approaches that facilitate discovery of new systems, phage biology experiences a revival. This review describes variety of strategies employed by microbes to counter phage infection, with a focus on novel systems discovered in recent years. First chapter covers defense associated with cell surface, role of small molecules, and innate immunity systems relying on DNA modification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-337
Number of pages19
JournalBiochemistry (Moscow)
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • antiviral defense
  • bacteriophages
  • BREX
  • CRISPR-Cas
  • Dnd systems
  • immunity systems
  • phage–host interactions
  • phosphorothioate
  • restriction–modification


Dive into the research topics of 'Microbial Arsenal of Antiviral Defenses – Part I'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this