Efficient elimination of multidrug-resistant Staphylococcus aureus by cloned lysin derived from bacteriophage phi MR11

J Infect Dis. 2007 Oct 15;196(8):1237-47. doi: 10.1086/521305. Epub 2007 Sep 11.


We report the successful purification of a cloned lysin encoded by the novel Staphylococcus aureus bacteriophage phi MR11. The lysin, designated MV-L, rapidly and completely lysed cells of a number of S. aureus strains tested, including methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant S. aureus and a subset of vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus (VISA) in growing conditions. MV-L-mediated killing is specific to S. aureus and not to other species, except for S. simulans. MV-L exerted its staphylocidal effect synergistically with glycopeptide antibiotics against VISA. MV-L efficiently eliminated MRSA that had been artificially inoculated into the nares of mice. The intraperitoneal administration of MV-L also protected mice against MRSA septic death, without any harmful effects. Although MV-L evoked detectable levels of a humoral response in mice, the antibodies did not abolish the bacteriolytic activity. These results indicate that MV-L might be useful as a powerful therapeutic agent against multidrug-resistant S. aureus infections.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Intranasal
  • Administration, Topical
  • Animals
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / isolation & purification
  • Bacterial Toxins / administration & dosage*
  • Bacterial Toxins / isolation & purification
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial / drug effects*
  • Endopeptidases / administration & dosage
  • Endopeptidases / biosynthesis
  • Female
  • Hemolysin Proteins / administration & dosage*
  • Hemolysin Proteins / isolation & purification
  • Methicillin Resistance / drug effects
  • Mice
  • Recombinant Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Recombinant Proteins / isolation & purification
  • Staphylococcus Phages / metabolism*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / virology
  • Vancomycin Resistance / drug effects


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Bacterial Toxins
  • Hemolysin Proteins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • staphylococcal alpha-toxin
  • Endopeptidases
  • MV-L lysin, bacteriophage phiMR11