Multidrug-resistant uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) is increasing gradually on a worldwide scale. We therefore examined the possibility of bacteriophage (phage) therapy for urinary tract infections (UTIs) caused by the UPEC strains as an alternative to chemotherapy. In addition to the well-known T4 phage, KEP10, which was newly isolated, was used as a therapeutic phage candidate. KEP10 showed a broader bacteriolytic spectrum (67%) for UPEC strains than T4 (14%). Morphological and genetic analyses showed that KEP10 resembles phage T4. Phages T4 and KEP10 injected into the peritoneal cavity of mice were distributed immediately to all organs examined and maintained a high titer for at least 24 h. They were stable in the urine of both mice and humans for 24 h at 37°C. Administration of these phages into the peritoneal cavity caused a marked decrease in the mortality of mice inoculated transurethrally with a UPEC strain, whereas most of the control mice died within a few days of bacterial infection. Inoculation with phage alone produced no adverse effects attributable to the phage per se. The present study experimentally demonstrated the therapeutic potential of phage for E. coli -induced UTIs, and T-even-related phages may be suitable candidates with which to treat them.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 1, 2008
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