The action of Escherichia coli CRISPR-Cas system on lytic bacteriophages with different lifestyles and development strategies

Alexandra Strotskaya, Ekaterina Savitskaya, Anastasia Metlitskaya, Natalia Morozova, Kirill A. Datsenko, Ekaterina Semenova, Konstantin Severinov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

CRISPR-Cas systems provide prokaryotes with adaptive defense against bacteriophage infections. Given an enormous variety of strategies used by phages to overcome their hosts, one can expect that the efficiency of protective action of CRISPR-Cas systems against different viruses should vary. Here, we created a collection of Escherichia coli strains with type I-E CRISPR-Cas system targeting various positions in the genomes of bacteriophages λ, T5, T7, T4 and R1-37 and investigated the ability of these strains to resist the infection and acquire additional CRISPR spacers from the infecting phage. We find that the efficiency of CRISPR-Cas targeting by the host is determined by phage life style, the positions of the targeted protospacer within the genome, and the state of phage DNA. The results also suggest that during infection by lytic phages that are susceptible to CRISPR interference, CRISPR-Cas does not act as a true immunity system that saves the infected cell but rather enforces an abortive infection pathway leading to infected cell death with no phage progeny release.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1946-1957
Number of pages12
JournalNucleic Acids Research
Volume45
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2017
Externally publishedYes

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