Rohwer Wegley-Kelly Lab

Lab News & Events

Nov 18, 2015

The aesthetics of coral reefs

By Perrin Ireland

Awesome science of the week

News Article
Oct 22, 2015

The story behind the paper by @JeremyJBarr on phage using mucus to hunt prey

By Jonathan Eisen

Jeremy Barr's article featured at the Tree of Life website

News Article
Oct 19, 2015

The Phage is a Lonely Hunter

By Michael Price

New research reveals that bacteriophages use slow, staccato movements to hunt bacteria on cell surfaces.

News Article
Oct 19, 2015

PNAS: Subdiffusive motion of bacteriophage in mucosal surfaces increases the frequency of bacterial encounters

By Jeremy Barr et al.

PNAS paper

Bacteriophages (phages) are viruses that infect and kill bacteria. Being inanimate, phages rely on diffusion to search for bacterial prey. Here we demonstrate that a phage that adheres weakly to mucus exhibits subdiffusive motion, not normal diffusion, in mucosal surfaces. Supporting theory and experiments revealed that subdiffusive motion increases bacterial encounter rates for phages when bacterial concentration is low. To the best of our knowledge, no other predator has been shown to effectively use a subdiffusive search mechanism. Mucosal surfaces are vulnerable to infection. Mucus-adherent phages reduce bacterial infection of lifelike mucosal surfaces more effectively than nonadherent phages. These findings provide a basis for engineering adherent phages to manipulate mucosal surface microbiomes for protection from infection and other purposes.

News Article
May 14, 2015

Microbe Magazine Book Review: Life in Our Phage World

By Abraham Eisenstark
News Article
Mar 09, 2015 New Drawings Show the Strange Beauty of Phages, the Bacteria Slayers

By Brian Handwerk
News Article
Feb 16, 2015

Inside the World of Viral Dark Matter

By Nicola Twilley

A celebration of the phage centennial in The New Yorker.

News Article

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Lab Info
North Life Sciences Biology Bldg
San Diego State University

PDF: Lab Directions
Map: 32.777818, -117.071543

Forest Rohwer, PhD
Professor of Biology
SDSU Dept. of Biology