A1 Journal article (refereed)
Targeting antibiotic resistant bacteria with phage reduces bacterial density in an insect host (2019)

Mikonranta, L., Buckling, A., Jalasvuori, M., & Raymond, B. (2019). Targeting antibiotic resistant bacteria with phage reduces bacterial density in an insect host. Biology Letters, 15(3), Article 20180895. https://doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2018.0895

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Mikonranta, Lauri; Buckling, Angus; Jalasvuori, Matti; Raymond, Ben

Journal or series: Biology Letters

ISSN: 1744-9561

eISSN: 1744-957X

Publication year: 2019

Volume: 15

Issue number: 3

Article number: 20180895

Publisher: Royal Society Publishing

Publication country: United Kingdom

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2018.0895

Research data link: http://dx.doi.org/10.5061/dryad.sc54383

Publication open access: Not open

Publication channel open access:

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/63920


Phage therapy is attracting growing interest among clinicians as antibiotic resistance continues becoming harder to control. However, clinical trials and animal model studies on bacteriophage treatment are still scarce and results on the efficacy vary. Recent research suggests that using traditional antimicrobials in concert with phage could have desirable synergistic effects that hinder the evolution of resistance. Here, we present a novel insect gut model to study phage–antibiotic interaction in a system where antibiotic resistance initially exists in very low frequency and phage specifically targets the resistance bearing cells. We demonstrate that while phage therapy could not reduce the frequency of target bacteria in the population during positive selection by antibiotics, it alleviated the antibiotic induced blooming by lowering the overall load of resistant cells. The highly structured gut environment had pharmacokinetic effects on both phage and antibiotic dynamics compared with in vitro: antibiotics did not reduce the overall amount of bacteria, demonstrating a simple turnover of gut microbiota from non-resistant to resistant population with little cost. The results imply moderate potential for using phage as an aid to target antibiotic resistant gut infections, and question the usefulness of in vitro inferences.

Keywords: antibiotic resistance; bacteriophages; Enterobacteriaceae; phage therapy

Free keywords: bacteriophage; Enterobacter cloacae; gut infection; insect model

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Related projects

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2019

JUFO rating: 2

Last updated on 2021-28-06 at 17:06