Bacteriophage Genomics: from Seawater to Slurry - Andrew Millard (University of Leicester)

12:00pm - 1:00pm / Monday 5th March 2018 / Venue: Lecture Theatre 1 Life Sciences Building
Type: Seminar / Category: Research / Series: GSTT Seminar Series
  • Suitable for: Staff and students with an interest in Genomes, Systems and Therapeutic Targeting
  • Admission: Free event
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Viruses that infect bacteria (bacteriophages) are the most abundant biological entity on the planet; they can influence global biogeochemical cycles, pathogenicity and bacterial evolution. Despite their importance and small genome size, relatively few bacteriophage genomes have been sequenced, compared to their bacterial hosts.

The vast diversity of bacteriophages results in most genomes containing a high proportion of genes f unknown function. From studying phages present in seawater and cattle slurry, we have begun to uncover the vast diversity of phages and to determine a function for some of the genes they carry. Our work on cyanophages that infect the globally important primary producers Synechococcus and Prochlorococcus have shown they can alter their host's photosynthetic capability and ability to fix CO2. By decoupling C02 fixation from photosynthesis, cyanophage can change their host`s metabolism to provide more energy for phage replication.