Image_1_Diversity of Sinorhizobium (Ensifer) meliloti Bacteriophages in the Rhizosphere of Medicago marina: Myoviruses, Filamentous and N4-Like Podovirus.pdf
Using different Sinorhizobium meliloti strains as hosts, we isolated eight new virulent phages from the rhizosphere of the coastal legume Medicago marina. Half of the isolated phages showed a very narrow host range while the other half exhibited a wider host range within the strains tested. Electron microscopy studies showed that phages M_ort18, M_sf1.2, and M_sf3.33 belonged to the Myoviridae family with feature long, contractile tails and icosaedral head. Phages I_sf3.21 and I_sf3.10T appeared to have filamentous shape and produced turbid plaques, which is a characteristic of phages from the Inoviridae family. Phage P_ort11 is a member of the Podoviridae, with an icosahedral head and a short tail and was selected for further characterization and genome sequencing. P_ort11 contained linear, double-stranded DNA with a length of 75239 bp and 103 putative open reading frames. BLASTP analysis revealed strong similarities to Escherichia phage N4 and other N4-like phages. This is the first report of filamentous and N4-like phages that infect S. meliloti.