C&T Round Up for May 2021

Issue 128 | May 28, 2021
5 min read
Capsid and Tail

This week, we’re highlighting the three feature articles we published in May: a ‘behind-the-paper’ guest post by Steven Sutcliffe and Michael Shamash, a full recap of all six iVoM webinars by Ivone Martins and Luis Melo, and an interview with Dr. David Harper on phage therapy, past and future, by Curtis Hoffmann.

What’s New

Wondering whether collecting and studying phages is worth your while? Here’s a new article in Cystic Fibrosis News Today that remembers Mallory Smith, a young woman who phages could have saved, if they’d only been accessible a few days earlier. The article talks about how Mallory’s mom, Diane Shader Smith, has continued Mallory’s legacy through speaking about her story (172 presentations to date!) and fundraising for phage therapy. We highly recommend reading Mallory’s memoir, Salt in My Soul, a beautiful piece adapted from her diary entries for her last decade of life.

In memoryNewsPhage Therapy

Carlos Guerrero-Bustamante (University of Pittsburgh) and colleagues published a new paper in MBio showing their progress toward developing a phage cocktail for tuberculosis; using genome engineering and phage genetics, they have created a five-phage cocktail effective against diverse Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains, which minimizes phage resistance and does not interfere with antibiotic efficacy.

Phage cocktail developmentPhage engineeringResearch paper

Graça Pinto (University of Minho) and colleagues published a new paper in BMC Genomics showing insights into the genome architecture and evolution of Shiga toxin encoding phages of E. coli.

Phage genomicsResearch paper

Tristan Ferry (Hospices Civils de Lyon) and colleagues published a new case report in Frontiers in Medicine describing the combination of arthroscopic “Debridement Antibiotics and Implant Retention” (DAIR) with local injection of personalized phage therapy to salvage a relapsing Pseudomonas aeruginosa prosthetic knee infection.

Case studyPhage TherapyProsthetic joint infections

Shakhinur Islam Mondal (APC Microbiome Ireland) and colleagues published a new paper in International Journal of Molecular Sciences that characterizes a Clostridioides difficile-specific endolysin that affects spore outgrowth.

LysinsResearch paper

Latest Jobs

Post DocTechnician
The Buchan lab within the Department of Microbiology at the University of Tennessee is seeking a post-doctoral research associate to study phages that infect a member of the Roseobacter lineage of marine bacteria. Please feel free to contact Alison Buchan ([email protected]) with any questions. They are also looking for a technician so if you know an undergrad student who wants to get hands-on experience in a lab, let them know.
Post DocResearch Assistant
Colin Hill’s Gut Phageomics Lab at APC Microbiome in Cork, Ireland is seeking a wet-lab/bioinformatics postdoc and wet-lab research assistant to investigate the role of phages in health and disease.
Felix Biotechnology is hiring an Intern! As a Felix intern, you’ll support Felix’s efforts in developing phage therapeutics using techniques such as bacterial culture, phage/host interaction studies, and microbial genetic engineering. Contact [email protected] if interested!

Community Board

Anyone can post a message to the phage community — and it could be anything from collaboration requests, post-doc searches, sequencing help — just ask!

PHAVES #18 will be a seminar by Rob McBride, co-founder of Felix Biotechnology, on Tues, June 8, 5PM Pacific time. Rob will give a talk on ‘Using machine learning to design phages with enhanced therapeutic features’. Small group networking to follow! Register here for this event or future PHAVES events!

Phage TherapyVirtual Event

The Australian Society for Microbiology annual conference is approaching fast — next week to be exact! (May 31-June 3). Excitingly, the program features lots of phage talks! This is a hybrid event, and will run both in-person and online. Register here.

ConferenceHybridVirtual Event

PhageSuisse will host its third webinar on June 1st at 19h00, entitled “phageSuisse meets industry” with Dr. Frenk Smrekar from JAFRAL and Dr. Lorenzo Corsini from PhagoMed.

BiotechPhage TherapyVirtual Event

The International Virus Bioinformatics Meeting 2022 (ViBioM 2022) will be held in Valencia, Spain, 24–25 March 2022. The meeting (currently planned to be in-person) is jointly organized by the European Virus Bioinformatics Center (EVBC), the Institute of Agrochemistry and Food Technology (IATA-CSIC), and the University of Valencia. Registration is free of charge, works on a first-come, first-serve basis and is open for 120 participants.


C&T Round Up for May 2021

Profile Image
Phage microbiologist and co-founder of Phage Directory
Co-founderPostdoctoral Researcher
Iredell Lab, Phage Directory, The Westmead Institute for Medical Research, Sydney, Australia, Phage Australia

Phage characterization, Phage-host interactions, Phage Therapy, Molecular Biology

I’m a co-founder of Phage Directory and have a Ph.D in Microbiology and Biotechnology from the University of Alberta (I studied Campylobacter phage biology). For Phage Directory, I oversee community building, phage sourcing, communications, science, and our awesome team of volunteers.

As of Feb 2022, I’ve recently joined Jon Iredell’s group in Sydney, Australia as a postdoctoral research scientist for the Phage Australia project. I’m diving back into the lab to help get Phage Australia’s country-wide phage therapy system up and running here, working to streamline workflows for phage sourcing, biobanking and collection of phage/bacteria/patient matching and monitoring data, and integrating it all with Phage Directory’s phage exchange, phage alerts and phage atlas systems. I’m also delving into phage manufacturing and quality control.

In this month’s Capsid & Tail Monthly Round Up issue, we’re highlighting the three feature articles we published in May. Be sure to check them out if you missed them, and let us know if you have thoughts, comments or questions! Reach us anytime by email or Slack!

C&T Throwback!

There’s lots of great phage stuff in the C&T archive! In case you missed it, check out issue #64, which featured a guest blog post on Insights into the elusive RNA bacteriophages by Julie Callanan!

Capsid & Tail

Follow Capsid & Tail, the periodical that reports the latest news from the phage therapy and research community.

We send Phage Alerts to the community when doctors require phages to treat their patient’s infections. If you need phages, please email us.

Sign up for Phage Alerts

In collaboration with

Mary Ann Liebert PHAGE

Supported by

Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust

Crossref Member Badge