Isolation, characterization, and application of bacteriophage cocktails for the biocontrol of Pseudomonas fluorescens group strains in whole and skimmed milk

Tayyarcan E. K., BOYACI İ. H.

Brazilian Journal of Microbiology, vol.54, no.4, pp.3061-3071, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 54 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s42770-023-01164-2
  • Journal Name: Brazilian Journal of Microbiology
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Agricultural & Environmental Science Database, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.3061-3071
  • Keywords: Bacteriophage, Biocontrol, Milk spoilage, Pseudomonas fluorescens, Psychrotrophic bacteria
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Pseudomonas fluorescens group strains can lead to spoilage of milk as well as loss of quality in dairy products through their heat-resistant enzymes. Phages are important alternatives for combating spoilage bacteria in food industry and used successfully in many applications. The aim of this study was the isolation and characterization of phages and to assess the efficiency of a phage cocktail in whole and skimmed milk. For this purpose, phages effective against Pseudomonas fluorescens (L23.2), Pseudomonas tolaasii (P22.1), and Pseudomonas rhodesiae (A11.1) were isolated. Their host range was found to be highly specific, and the transmission electron micrographs indicates that they belonged to Tectiviridae family. Their genome sizes were found to be vary between 38.3 and 53.5 kb. The latent periods and burst sizes were determined as 15, 10, 15 min and 91, 20, 80 PFU/infected cell for L23.2, P22.1, and A11.1, respectively. All three phages were found to be sensitive to low pH and high temperature. The effect of the phage cocktail was monitored in milk with different fat contents during storage at 4 °C for 5 days. As a result, bacterial reductions up to 4.09 and 5.29 log-units were observed for the whole and skimmed milk, respectively. Thus, the efficacy of a phage cocktail against a bacterial mixture of different P. fluorescens strains was tested in milk samples with different fat contents in accordance with real-life scenarios for the first time.