Summary: The phenomenon by which a temperate phage incorporates itself into the DNA of a bacterial host, establishing a kind of symbiotic relation between PROPHAGE and bacterium which results in the perpetuation of the prophage in all the descendants of the bacterium. Upon induction (VIRUS ACTIVATION) by various agents, such as ultraviolet radiation, the phage is released, which then becomes virulent and lyses the bacterium.

Top Publications

  1. Anderson L, Yang H. DNA looping can enhance lysogenic CI transcription in phage lambda. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008;105:5827-32 pubmed publisher
    ..Based on our results, transcriptional regulation for lambda's lysogenic/lytic switch includes both activation and repression due to DNA looping...
  2. Seed K, Dennis J. Isolation and characterization of bacteriophages of the Burkholderia cepacia complex. FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2005;251:273-80 pubmed
    ..These isolates include a bacteriophage with one of the broadest host ranges yet identified for any bacteriophage specific to the B. cepacia complex, and the first description of bacteriophages capable of lysing B. ambifaria. ..
  3. Chen Y, Golding I, Sawai S, Guo L, Cox E. Population fitness and the regulation of Escherichia coli genes by bacterial viruses. PLoS Biol. 2005;3:e229 pubmed
    ..pathway increases lysogen fitness by lowering the growth rate of lysogens in energy-poor environments, perhaps as an adaptive response to the host predation system or as an aspect of lysogeny that must be offset by down-regulating pckA.
  4. Kobiler O, Rokney A, Friedman N, Court D, Stavans J, Oppenheim A. Quantitative kinetic analysis of the bacteriophage lambda genetic network. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2005;102:4470-5 pubmed
    The lysis-lysogeny decision of bacteriophage lambda has been a paradigm for a developmental genetic network, which is composed of interlocked positive and negative feedback loops...
  5. Parua P, Mondal A, Parrack P. HflD, an Escherichia coli protein involved in the lambda lysis-lysogeny switch, impairs transcription activation by lambdaCII. Arch Biochem Biophys. 2010;493:175-83 pubmed publisher
    ..In addition, other E. coli proteins HflK, HflC and HflD also influence lysogeny by acting upon CII. Among these, HflD (22...
  6. Pasharawipas T, Wetchakit N, Sriurairatana S. The cycle for a Siphoviridae-like phage (VHS1) of Vibrio harveyi is dependent on the physiological state of the host. Virus Res. 2008;135:332-5 pubmed publisher
    ..A chloramphenical-added-ASW treated pseudolysogen clone (PLC), however, prevented VHS1 infection. It is postulated that the infection of VHS1 phage is regulated with a phage binding receptor which supposed to be inducible...
  7. Ravin N. N15: the linear phage-plasmid. Plasmid. 2011;65:102-9 pubmed publisher
    ..The centromeres are located in N15 genome regions involved in phage replication and control of lysogeny, and binding of partition proteins at these sites regulates these processes...
  8. Derbise A, Chenal Francisque V, Pouillot F, Fayolle C, Prevost M, Medigue C, et al. A horizontally acquired filamentous phage contributes to the pathogenicity of the plague bacillus. Mol Microbiol. 2007;63:1145-57 pubmed
    ..Continued maintenance of YpfPhi despite its high in vitro instability suggests that it confers selective advantages to Y. pestis under natural conditions. ..
  9. Avlund M, Dodd I, Sneppen K, Krishna S. Minimal gene regulatory circuits that can count like bacteriophage lambda. J Mol Biol. 2009;394:681-93 pubmed publisher
    ..The bistable GRN of bacteriophage lambda is able to count to make a decision between lysis and lysogeny on the basis of the number of phages infecting the cell, even though replication of the phage genome eliminates ..

More Information


  1. Degnan P, Michalowski C, Babic A, Cordes M, Little J. Conservation and diversity in the immunity regions of wild phages with the immunity specificity of phage lambda. Mol Microbiol. 2007;64:232-44 pubmed
    ..isolates, different alleles of two regulatory proteins (N and CII) flank the immunity region; possibly the lysis-lysogeny decision is more variable among isolates...
  2. Sekulovic O, Meessen Pinard M, Fortier L. Prophage-stimulated toxin production in Clostridium difficile NAP1/027 lysogens. J Bacteriol. 2011;193:2726-34 pubmed publisher
    ..difficile and brings further evidence supporting the role of prophages in toxin production in this important nosocomial pathogen. ..
  3. Kim A, Ghosh P, Aaron M, Bibb L, Jain S, Hatfull G. Mycobacteriophage Bxb1 integrates into the Mycobacterium smegmatis groEL1 gene. Mol Microbiol. 2003;50:463-73 pubmed
    ..Establishment of a defined in vitro system for Bxb1 integration shows that recombination occurs efficiently without requirement for high-energy cofactors, divalent metals, DNA supercoiling or additional proteins...
  4. Xu X, McAteer S, Tree J, Shaw D, Wolfson E, Beatson S, et al. Lysogeny with Shiga toxin 2-encoding bacteriophages represses type III secretion in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli. PLoS Pathog. 2012;8:e1002672 pubmed publisher
    ..strains had a lower median level of T3S compared to PT32 strains and so the relationship between Stx phage lysogeny and T3S was investigated...
  5. Avlund M, Dodd I, Semsey S, Sneppen K, Krishna S. Why do phage play dice?. J Virol. 2009;83:11416-20 pubmed publisher
    ..Crucial to the argument is the clonal identity of the phage. ..
  6. Svenningsen S, Costantino N, Court D, Adhya S. On the role of Cro in lambda prophage induction. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2005;102:4465-9 pubmed publisher
    ..O(L) and O(R)), increases repression of the early lytic promoters and is important for stable maintenance of lysogeny. Second, we show that the presence of the cro gene might be unimportant for the lysogenic to lytic switch during ..
  7. Sampson T, Broussard G, Marinelli L, Jacobs Sera D, Ray M, Ko C, et al. Mycobacteriophages BPs, Angel and Halo: comparative genomics reveals a novel class of ultra-small mobile genetic elements. Microbiology. 2009;155:2962-77 pubmed publisher
    ..In addition, BPs, Angel and Halo have an unusual lysogeny module in which the repressor and integrase genes are closely linked...
  8. Fogg P, Gossage S, Smith D, Saunders J, McCarthy A, Allison H. Identification of multiple integration sites for Stx-phage Phi24B in the Escherichia coli genome, description of a novel integrase and evidence for a functional anti-repressor. Microbiology. 2007;153:4098-110 pubmed
    ..Second, multiple copies of the stx gene may lead to an increase in toxin production and consequently increased virulence. ..
  9. Maurice C, Mouillot D, Bettarel Y, de Wit R, Sarmento H, Bouvier T. Disentangling the relative influence of bacterioplankton phylogeny and metabolism on lysogeny in reservoirs and lagoons. ISME J. 2011;5:831-42 pubmed publisher
    Previous studies indicate that lysogeny is preponderant when environmental conditions are challenging for the bacterial communities and when their metabolism is reduced...
  10. Casas V, Maloy S. Role of bacteriophage-encoded exotoxins in the evolution of bacterial pathogens. Future Microbiol. 2011;6:1461-73 pubmed publisher
    ..These findings suggest that the exotoxin genes may play a beneficial role for the bacterial host in nature, and that this environmental reservoir of exotoxin genes may play a role in the evolution of new bacterial pathogens. ..
  11. Liu M, Gingery M, Doulatov S, Liu Y, Hodes A, Baker S, et al. Genomic and genetic analysis of Bordetella bacteriophages encoding reverse transcriptase-mediated tropism-switching cassettes. J Bacteriol. 2004;186:1503-17 pubmed
    ..Bordetella bacteriophages are capable of transducing genetic markers in vitro, and by using animal models, we demonstrated that lysogenic conversion can take place in the mouse respiratory tract during infection. ..
  12. Łoś M, Wegrzyn G. Pseudolysogeny. Adv Virus Res. 2012;82:339-49 pubmed publisher
    ..This phenomenon can be an important aspect of phage-dependent bacterial mortality and may influence the virulence of some bacterial strains. ..
  13. Weitz J, Mileyko Y, Joh R, Voit E. Collective decision making in bacterial viruses. Biophys J. 2008;95:2673-80 pubmed publisher
    ..Because the model is general, it suggests that bacterial viruses can respond adaptively to changes in population dynamics, and that features of collective decision-making in viruses are evolvable life history traits...
  14. Schuch R, Fischetti V. The secret life of the anthrax agent Bacillus anthracis: bacteriophage-mediated ecological adaptations. PLoS ONE. 2009;4:e6532 pubmed publisher
    ..Using both laboratory and environmental B. anthracis strains, we show that lysogeny can block or promote sporulation depending on the phage, induce exopolysaccharide expression and biofilm ..
  15. Fischetti V. In vivo acquisition of prophage in Streptococcus pyogenes. Trends Microbiol. 2007;15:297-300 pubmed
    ..This suggests that, through evolution, phage have devised a system whereby progeny phage are induced and transferred to host streptococci at a site where host organisms are more prevalent. ..
  16. Parua P, Datta A, Parrack P. Specific hydrophobic residues in the alpha4 helix of lambdaCII are crucial for maintaining its tetrameric structure and directing the lysogenic choice. J Gen Virol. 2010;91:306-12 pubmed publisher
    ..When any of these residues was substituted by a polar one, CII lost its activity and failed to promote lysogeny. This loss of activity was accompanied by the inability of CII to form tetramers, to bind DNA or to activate ..
  17. Heo Y, Chung I, Choi K, Lau G, Cho Y. Genome sequence comparison and superinfection between two related Pseudomonas aeruginosa phages, D3112 and MP22. Microbiology. 2007;153:2885-95 pubmed
    ..In contrast, although an MP22 lysogen could be productively infected with D3112, MP22 could not grow on a D3112 lysogen, indicating a role of other D3112 genes in superinfection exclusion. ..
  18. Paul J. Prophages in marine bacteria: dangerous molecular time bombs or the key to survival in the seas?. ISME J. 2008;2:579-89 pubmed publisher
    ..Occurrences of lysogeny in the oceans correlate well with conditions unfavorable for rapid host growth...
  19. Campbell A. Prophage insertion sites. Res Microbiol. 2003;154:277-82 pubmed
    ..The integrase proteins used in phage insertion may have originated at that stage, with subsequent diversification of specificity. ..
  20. Murphy K, Ritchie J, Waldor M, Løbner Olesen A, Marinus M. Dam methyltransferase is required for stable lysogeny of the Shiga toxin (Stx2)-encoding bacteriophage 933W of enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli O157:H7. J Bacteriol. 2008;190:438-41 pubmed Stx2 production, and here, we provide evidence that Dam methyltransferase is essential for maintenance of 933W lysogeny. Our findings are consistent with the idea that the 933W prophage has a relatively low threshold for induction, ..
  21. Oppenheim A, Kobiler O, Stavans J, Court D, Adhya S. Switches in bacteriophage lambda development. Annu Rev Genet. 2005;39:409-29 pubmed
    The lysis-lysogeny decision of bacteriophage lambda (lambda) is a paradigm for developmental genetic networks. There are three key features, which characterize the network...
  22. Hassan F, Kamruzzaman M, Mekalanos J, Faruque S. Satellite phage TLC? enables toxigenic conversion by CTX phage through dif site alteration. Nature. 2010;467:982-5 pubmed publisher
    ..cholerae wild-type and mutant strains with dif(-) filamentation phenotypes. Furthermore, lysogeny of a dif(-) non-toxigenic V...
  23. Ehrbar K, Hardt W. Bacteriophage-encoded type III effectors in Salmonella enterica subspecies 1 serovar Typhimurium. Infect Genet Evol. 2005;5:1-9 pubmed
    ..Additional data supporting the hypothesis are presented. This is a prerequisite to allow optimization of the bacterium host cell interaction by reassortment of the phage-encoded effector protein repertoire. ..
  24. Fogg P, Saunders J, McCarthy A, Allison H. Cumulative effect of prophage burden on Shiga toxin production in Escherichia coli. Microbiology. 2012;158:488-97 pubmed publisher
    ..Overall, these data demonstrate that the phenomenon of multiple lysogeny in STEC has the potential to impact upon disease pathology through increased toxin load.
  25. Zeng L, Skinner S, Zong C, Sippy J, Feiss M, Golding I. Decision making at a subcellular level determines the outcome of bacteriophage infection. Cell. 2010;141:682-91 pubmed publisher
    ..decision in bacteriophage lambda at single-virus resolution, and show that a choice between lysis and lysogeny is first made at the level of the individual virus...
  26. Edgar R, Qimron U. The Escherichia coli CRISPR system protects from ? lysogenization, lysogens, and prophage induction. J Bacteriol. 2010;192:6291-4 pubmed publisher
    ..The results demonstrate that genomic DNA is not immune to the CRISPR system, that the CRISPR system does not require noncytoplasmic elements, and that the system protects from phages entering and exiting the lysogenic cycle. ..
  27. St Pierre F, Endy D. Determination of cell fate selection during phage lambda infection. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2008;105:20705-10 pubmed publisher
    ..Building from this analysis, the lambda lysis-lysogeny decision now serves as a paradigm for how intrinsic molecular noise can influence cellular behavior, drive ..
  28. Ferrer M, Quiles Puchalt N, Harwich M, Tormo Más M, Campoy S, Barbe J, et al. RinA controls phage-mediated packaging and transfer of virulence genes in Gram-positive bacteria. Nucleic Acids Res. 2011;39:5866-78 pubmed publisher
    ..Characterization of several of these proteins demonstrated that control by RinA of the phage-mediated packaging and transfer of virulence factor is a conserved mechanism regulating horizontal gene transfer...
  29. Ghosh D, Roy K, Williamson K, White D, Wommack K, Sublette K, et al. Prevalence of lysogeny among soil bacteria and presence of 16S rRNA and trzN genes in viral-community DNA. Appl Environ Microbiol. 2008;74:495-502 pubmed
    ..However, little is known about lysogeny and transduction in the soil environment...
  30. Neve H, Freudenberg W, Diestel Feddersen F, Ehlert R, Heller K. Biology of the temperate Streptococcus thermophilus bacteriophage TP-J34 and physical characterization of the phage genome. Virology. 2003;315:184-94 pubmed
    ..When phage TP-J34 was propagated lytically on a prophage-cured host strain, a 2.7-kb site-specific deletion occurred in the phage genome. This deletion was also identified in the prophage DNAs of relysogenized strains...
  31. Rokney A, Kobiler O, Amir A, Court D, Stavans J, Adhya S, et al. Host responses influence on the induction of lambda prophage. Mol Microbiol. 2008;68:29-36 pubmed publisher
    ..We also show that, despite the common inhibitory effect on CII function, there are significant differences in the heat- and SOS-induced pathways leading to the lytic cascade. ..
  32. Williamson S, Cary S, Williamson K, Helton R, Bench S, Winget D, et al. Lysogenic virus-host interactions predominate at deep-sea diffuse-flow hydrothermal vents. ISME J. 2008;2:1112-21 pubmed publisher
    ..Thus, it appears likely that temperate viruses are key players in the ecology of prokaryotes within the extreme geothermal ecosystems of the deep sea. ..
  33. Livny J, Friedman D. Characterizing spontaneous induction of Stx encoding phages using a selectable reporter system. Mol Microbiol. 2004;51:1691-704 pubmed
    ..iv) Only a small fraction of the lysogens in a culture spontaneously induce and when the lysogen carries two lambdoid prophages with different repressor/operators, 933W and H-19B, usually both prophages in the same cell are induced...
  34. Fujii Y, Kubo T, Ishikawa H, Sasaki T. Isolation and characterization of the bacteriophage WO from Wolbachia, an arthropod endosymbiont. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2004;317:1183-8 pubmed
    ..This bacteriophage is the only known mobile genetic element potentially used for transformation of Wolbachia. ..
  35. Pato M. Replication of Mu prophages lacking the central strong gyrase site. Res Microbiol. 2004;155:553-8 pubmed
    ..However, there were also exceptions to this overall gradient. Possible explanations for the differences in the delays observed with SGS(-) prophages are discussed. ..
  36. Atsumi S, Little J. Regulatory circuit design and evolution using phage lambda. Genes Dev. 2004;18:2086-94 pubmed
    ..They also underscore the advantages of modifying a natural circuit as an approach to understanding circuit design, systems behavior, and circuit evolution. ..
  37. Refardt D. Within-host competition determines reproductive success of temperate bacteriophages. ISME J. 2011;5:1451-60 pubmed publisher
    ..The results emphasize that within-host competition greatly affects phage fitness and that multiple infections should be considered an integral part of bacteriophage ecology. ..
  38. Brussow H, Canchaya C, Hardt W. Phages and the evolution of bacterial pathogens: from genomic rearrangements to lysogenic conversion. Microbiol Mol Biol Rev. 2004;68:560-602, table of contents pubmed
    ..In addition, they can serve as anchoring points for genome inversions. The current review presents the available genomics and biological data on prophages from bacterial pathogens in an evolutionary framework. ..
  39. Resch A, Fehrenbacher B, Eisele K, Schaller M, Götz F. Phage release from biofilm and planktonic Staphylococcus aureus cells. FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2005;252:89-96 pubmed
    ..This might therefore be an early differentiation and apoptotic mechanism. ..
  40. Sakaguchi Y, Hayashi T, Kurokawa K, Nakayama K, Oshima K, Fujinaga Y, et al. The genome sequence of Clostridium botulinum type C neurotoxin-converting phage and the molecular mechanisms of unstable lysogeny. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2005;102:17472-7 pubmed
    ..These features account for the unstable lysogeny of BoNTX phages, which has historically been called "pseudolysogeny...
  41. Babic A, Little J. Cooperative DNA binding by CI repressor is dispensable in a phage lambda variant. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2007;104:17741-6 pubmed
    ..We surmise that cooperativity is a refinement to a more basic circuit, and that it affords increased stability to the lysogenic state in response to environmental variations. ..
  42. Atsumi S, Little J. Role of the lytic repressor in prophage induction of phage lambda as analyzed by a module-replacement approach. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006;103:4558-63 pubmed
    ..This epigenetic switch from lysogeny to the lytic state occurs on activation of the host SOS system, which leads to specific cleavage of CI repressor...
  43. Shkilnyj P, Koudelka G. Effect of salt shock on stability of lambdaimm434 lysogens. J Bacteriol. 2007;189:3115-23 pubmed
    ..The ability of bacteriophage 434 repressor to govern the lysis-lysogeny decision depends on the DNA binding activities of the phage's cI repressor protein...
  44. Lynch K, Stothard P, Dennis J. Genomic analysis and relatedness of P2-like phages of the Burkholderia cepacia complex. BMC Genomics. 2010;11:599 pubmed publisher
    ..The purpose of our study was to sequence and characterize three novel BCC-specific phages: KS5 (vB_BceM-KS5 or vB_BmuZ-ATCC 17616), KS14 (vB_BceM-KS14) and KL3 (vB_BamM-KL3 or vB_BceZ-CEP511)...
  45. Kobiler O, Rokney A, Oppenheim A. Phage lambda CIII: a protease inhibitor regulating the lysis-lysogeny decision. PLoS ONE. 2007;2:e363 pubmed
    ..The ATP-dependent protease FtsH (HflB) complexed with HflKC participates in post-translational control of the lysis-lysogeny decision of bacteriophage lambda by rapid degradation of lambda CII...
  46. Ubeda C, Maiques E, Tormo M, Campoy S, Lasa I, Barbe J, et al. SaPI operon I is required for SaPI packaging and is controlled by LexA. Mol Microbiol. 2007;65:41-50 pubmed
    ..Interestingly, mutations affecting the latter two genes were not defective in SaPI transfer, but rather encapsidated the island in full-sized phage heads, which would have to contain a multimeric SaPI genome...
  47. Schubert R, Dodd I, Egan J, Shearwin K. Cro's role in the CI Cro bistable switch is critical for {lambda}'s transition from lysogeny to lytic development. Genes Dev. 2007;21:2461-72 pubmed
    ..mutations had little impact on lambda development after infection but strongly inhibited the transition from lysogeny to the lytic pathway...
  48. Dutta D, Bandyopadhyay K, Datta A, Sardesai A, Parrack P. Properties of HflX, an enigmatic protein from Escherichia coli. J Bacteriol. 2009;191:2307-14 pubmed publisher
    ..Our results show that HflX is a monomeric protein with a high (30% to 40%) content of helices. It exhibits GTPase as well as ATPase activities, but it has no role in lambda lysogeny or in transposition.
  49. Williamson K, Schnitker J, Radosevich M, Smith D, Wommack K. Cultivation-based assessment of lysogeny among soil bacteria. Microb Ecol. 2008;56:437-47 pubmed publisher
    b>Lysogeny has long been proposed as an important long-term maintenance strategy for autochthonous soil bacteriophages (phages)...
  50. Sau S, Chattoraj P, Ganguly T, Lee C, Mandal N. Cloning and sequencing analysis of the repressor gene of temperate mycobacteriophage L1. J Biochem Mol Biol. 2004;37:254-9 pubmed
    ..Block IV in the L1 repressor is part of the most charged region encompassing amino acid residues 72-92, which flanks the putative N-terminal basic (residues 1-71) and C-terminal acidic (residues 93-183) domains of L1 repressor...
  51. Langley R, Kenna D, Vandamme P, Ure R, Govan J. Lysogeny and bacteriophage host range within the Burkholderia cepacia complex. J Med Microbiol. 2003;52:483-90 pubmed
    ..In this study, lysogeny was observed in 10 of 20 representative strains of the B. cepacia complex...
  52. Bertani G. Lysogeny at mid-twentieth century: P1, P2, and other experimental systems. J Bacteriol. 2004;186:595-600 pubmed
  53. Mills S, Shanahan F, Stanton C, Hill C, Coffey A, Ross R. Movers and shakers: influence of bacteriophages in shaping the mammalian gut microbiota. Gut Microbes. 2013;4:4-16 pubmed publisher
    ..Within this setting, lysogeny appears to be the preferred life cycle, presumably due to nutrient limitations and lack of suitable hosts ..