What is MS2 Bacteriophage, and its Ultimate Usage

What is MS2 Bacteriophage, and its Ultimate Usage

Viruses such as Rhinovirus, Influenza, Coronavirus, SARS, and Poliovirus are known to infect mammalian cells. But, do you know about the viruses that infect the bacterial cells? Such viruses are known as bacteriophages. Bacteriophages are relatively simple to work with while it provides beneficial information about product usage.

MS2 Bacteriophage can infect “male” Escherichia coli. These bacterial cells, male E. coli, can transfer some part of their genetic material to other cells through a pilus. It is a process of horizontal gene transfer that carries out genetic changes between the bacterial cells. Moreover, it spreads antibiotic resistance to preceding antibiotic-susceptible bacterial cells.

What is MS2 Bacteriophage?

MS2 Bacteriophage is a non-enveloped part of the Leviviridae category. These viruses infect target bacteria. MS2 infects Escherichia coli by confining to the surface of a ‘male’ F pilus. 

Pili, mostly in the form of plasmids, are the filamentous structures used to transfer genetic material. MS2 transports its genetic material into the bacterial cell. The host’s cellular replication machinery is to generate models of itself until the cell is destroyed.

Generally, MS2 can be used in wastewater management and as an indicator virus, which in size is 23-28 nm. Morphology and size are closely related to the Picornaviridae family that comprises various viruses that are pathogenic to humans, including poliovirus.

Escherichia virus MS2 is an icosahedral virus having single-stranded, positive-sense RNA virus. It infects Escherichia coli bacteria and other different members of the Enterobacteriaceae. MS2 is a part of closely related bacterial viruses such as Bacteriophage Qβ, bacteriophage f2, GA, and R17.

Bacteriophage therapy

Bacteriophage therapy is known as the application of phages to treat bacterial infections. Currently, phages are recognized as alternative therapeutics due to emerging hazards. They are a result of limited prospects and multidrug-resistant bacteria of recently known antibiotic treatments. 

Conventional phage therapy makes use of lytic phage for treatment. New human clinical trials have thereby provided excellent results. Moreover, various modern approaches have been considered in vitro and animal modes as a trial of therapeutic. 

Dual therapy using antibiotics and phage particles has played an essential part in reducing bacterial pathogens. Significant issues of conventional phage cocktails have been overpowered due to bioengineered phages. It also overcomes the problems of targeted drug delivery and phage resistance of drug-resistant bacteria.

MSE Bacteriophage Uses

MS2 Bacteriophage is used as a standard to study molecular biology processes. It includes viral RNA replication, translation method, and psychology of infected cells. MS2 RNA coding for viral polypeptides includes protein A, coat protein, and RNA replicase complex. The structure of the MS2 virus consists of Protein A and coat protein makeup.

MS2 can be used as an Internal Control in Viral Reverse Transcription-PCR Assays to verify the efficacy of the sample preparation and absence of inhibitors in the PCR reaction.

RNA, MS2 Uses

• As a model to determine RNA quantification methods

• For RNA extraction

• For stabilizing RNA during cDNA synthesis

• For studying the use of natural RNA in an in vitro and in vivo system. It serves the purpose of protein-synthesizing, elongation, initiation, and termination of polypeptide synthesis

• For various functional and structural studies

• For increasing the yield of RNA at the time of RNA isolation or extraction

Bacteriophage Usage as a Screening Tool

Cost and Time:

MS2 can be used as a virucidal efficacy screening tool. Viral disinfectant efficacy testing is generally known for its high maintenance costs. It is because of the time taken and the work required to propagate viruses and keep up the host cell lines. 

Using MS2 for preliminary screens, you can test many potentially efficacious formulations without extensive evaluation. The MS2 studies are conducted at lower costs than the other viruses. This is due to the absence of time-intensive cell propagations and passages. 

Viral Representative:

The EPA has observed a specific disinfection hierarchy for viruses that are applied while towelette and bridging testing is performed. Below the viruses are ranked in the following order:

• Small viruses (Non-enveloped) – Can’t be quickly inactivated

E.g., poliovirus, rhinovirus, or enterovirus.

• Large viruses (Non-enveloped) – Moderately easy to inactivate

E.g., papillomavirus, adenovirus, or rotavirus.

• Enveloped viruses – Most easy to inactivate

E.g., hepatitis virus, herpes virus, or influenza.

MS2 virions are measured to be 23-28 nm in diameter. They are categorized as small non-enveloped viruses such as human poliovirus and canine parvovirus. MS2 is much more sensitive than its counterparts in terms of different disinfection techniques. 

Compared to the other small non-enveloped viruses, MS2 is observed to be more sensitive. At the same time, its resistance is more towards inactivation than the enveloped viruses.

How can MS2 Bacteriophage help fight Coronavirus:

Thermo Fisher Scientific, A global life science company, has worked to widen a multiplex real-time RT-PCR diagnostic kit to facilitate medical and civic health laboratories to detect COVID-19 swiftly caused by SARS-CoV-2 disease. 

Characters of the latest developed multiplex diagnostic Combo kit:

The Combo Kit has both the TaqPath RT-PCR COVID-19 Kit and the TaqPath COVID-19 Control Kit. The medical laboratories can assess 94 specimens within 2 hours, or 382 samples within 6.5 hours, with a single Thermo Scientific KingFisher purification structure and applied biosystems in real-time PCR system arrangement.

 The kit is approved with RNA extracted from patients at risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 or with symptoms of COVID-19. Assays have all of the SARS-CoV2 genomes of high quality and full sequence length given by the GISAID proposal. Assays aim at genomic areas of the SARS-CoV-2 genome that are missing in other Coronaviruses such as SARS, MERS, bat SARS-like Coronavirus, etc. The kit is approved for use with RNA extracted from the below:

• Bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL)

• Nasopharyngeal swabs

• Nasopharyngeal aspirate (nasal aspirate)

The TaqPath COVID-19 Combo Kit is a single (1,000 reactions) 

TaqPath COVID-19 Assay Multiplex – multiplexed assays have 3 primer/probe sets precise to diverse SARS-CoV-2 genomic areas and primers/probes for Bacteriophage MS2

MS2 Phage Control – A RNA control to validate the effectiveness of the sample research and the absence of inhibitors in the PCR reaction; to execute the control, adding 10 μL of MS2 Phage Control to the samples before extracting the RNA

Contact our experts to know more about phage infection and its impact on the human immune system to control infectious diseases. For detailed information about MS2 Bacteriophage and to know more about our range of Coronavirus controls visit Helvetica Health Care today!