Determination of the attP and attB sites of phage φCD27 from Clostridium difficile NCTC 12727

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Abstract

The attP region of the Clostridium difficile phage φCD27 was identified, located immediately downstream of the putative recombinase. The phage could integrate into two specific sites (attB) in the C. difficile genome, one of which was in an open reading frame encoding a putative ATPase of an ABC transporter and the other in an open reading frame encoding a putative ATPase of the flagella protein export apparatus. The prophage was capable of excision and formation of a circular molecule and phages were spontaneously released at a low frequency during growth. Infection and lysogeny of a C. difficile strain previously shown to be sensitive to φCD27 were demonstrated, leading to a reduction in toxin production. Finally, a putative repressor was identified which is likely to be involved in maintaining lysogeny in these strains.

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