wksl3, a new biocontrol agent for Salmonella enterica serovars enteritidis and typhimurium in foods: Characterization, application, sequence analysis, and oral acute toxicity study

Hyun Wol Kang, Jae Won Kim, Tae Sung Jung, Gun-Jo Woo

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33 Citations (Scopus)


Of the Salmonella enterica serovars, S. Enteritidis and S. Typhimurium are responsible for most of the Salmonella outbreaks implicated in the consumption of contaminated foods in the Republic of Korea. Because of the widespread occurrence of antimicrobial- resistant Salmonella in foods and food processing environments, bacteriophages have recently surfaced as an alternative biocontrol tool. In this study, we isolated a virulent bacteriophage (wksl3) that could specifically infect S. Enteritidis, S. Typhimurium, and several additional serovars. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that phage wksl3 belongs to the family Siphoviridae. Complete genome sequence analysis and bioinformatic analysis revealed that the DNA of phage wksl3 is composed of 42,766 bp with 64 open reading frames. Since it does not encode any phage lysogeny factors, toxins, pathogen-related genes, or food-borne allergens, phage wksl3 may be considered a virulent phage with no side effects. Analysis of genetic similarities between phage wksl3 and four of its relatives (SS3e, vB_SenS-Ent1, SE2, and SETP3) allowed wksl3 to be categorized as a SETP3- like phage. A single-dose test of oral toxicity with BALB/c mice resulted in no abnormal clinical observations. Moreover, phage application to chicken skin at 8°C resulted in an about 2.5-log reduction in the number of Salmonella bacteria during the test period. The strong, stable lytic activity, the significant reduction of the number of S. Enteritidis bacteria after application to food, and the lack of clinical symptoms of this phage suggest that wksl3 may be a useful agent for the protection of foods against S. Enteritidis and S. Typhimurium contamination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1956-1968
Number of pages13
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Mar 1


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Biotechnology
  • Ecology

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