The protein interaction network of bacteriophage lambda with its host, Escherichia coli

Sonja Blasche, Stefan Wuchty, Seesandra V. Rajagopala, Peter Uetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Although most of the 73 open reading frames (ORFs) in bacteriophage λ have been investigated intensively, the function of many genes in host-phage interactions remains poorly understood. Using yeast two-hybrid screens of all lambda ORFs for interactions with its host Escherichia coli, we determined a raw data set of 631 host-phage interactions resulting in a set of 62 high-confidence interactions after multiple rounds of retesting. These links suggest novel regulatory interactions between the E. coli transcriptional network and lambda proteins. Targeted host proteins and genes required for lambda infection are enriched among highly connected proteins, suggesting that bacteriophages resemble interaction patterns of human viruses. Lambda tail proteins interact with both bacterial fimbrial proteins and E. coli proteins homologous to other phage proteins. Lambda appears to dramatically differ from other phages, such as T7, because of its unusually large number of modified and processed proteins, which reduces the number of host-virus interactions detectable by yeast twohybrid screens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12745-12755
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number23
StatePublished - Dec 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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