Sherwood Casjens

Professor of Pathology

Sherwood Casjens

B.S. Michigan State University

Ph.D. Stanford University

Research

References

sherwood.casjens@path.utah.edu

Sherwood Casjens' Lab Page

Sherwood Casjens' PubMed Literature Search

Molecular Biology Program

Bacteriophages, Lyme Disease

Research

This laboratory is studying two areas of prokaryotic molecular biology: (a) the assembly and DNA packaging of dsDNA bacteriophages and (b) chromosome structure and function in Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacteria that causes Lyme disease.

Our work on the bacteriophage problem has focused on phages lambda and P22. These viruses assemble protein precursor particles (the procapsids) first, and then insert the DNA chromosome into these preformed containers. Our work on these phages has concentrated on understanding the translational control of the expression of the genes whose products are involved in these processes and on dissection of the mechanism by which specific DNAs are recognized and inserted into the procapsids. We are using both genetic and biochemical approaches to determine the specific roles of the several proteins involved in the DNA packaging process.

The second area of study is focused on the genome of the Lyme disease spirochete. We and others have recently found that members of the Borrelia genus have a linear chromosomes. All other well characterized bacteria have circular chromosomes. We are currently characterizing the chromosome ends, and are interested in the handling of the ends by the replication machinery.

Casjens Figure

References

  1. Casjens, S, Gilcrease, E., Vujadinovic, M., Mongodin, E., Luft, B., Schutzer, S., Fraser-Liggett, C., and Qiu, W. (2017). Plasmid diversity and phylogenetic consistency in the Lyme disease agent Borrelia burgdorferiBMC genomics 18:165.
  2. Motlagh, A., Bhattacharjee, A., Coutinho, F., Dutilh, B., Casjens, S., and Goel, R. (2017). Insights of phage-host interaction in hypersaline ecosystem through metagenomics analsyses. Front. Microbiol8:352.
  3. Bhardwaj, A., Sankhala, R., Olia, A., Brooke, D., Casjens, S., Taylor, D., Prevelige, P., and Cingolani, G. (2016). Structural plasticity of the protein plug that traps newly packaged genomes in Podoviridae virions.  J. Biol. Chem. 291:215-226.
  4. Casjens, S., and Grose, J. (2016). Contributions of P2- and P22-like prophages to understanding the enormous diversity and abundance of tailed bacteriophages. Virology 496: 255-276.
  5. Wu, W., Leavitt, J. C., Cheng. N., Gilcrease, E. B., Motwani, T., Teschke, C. M., Casjens, S. R., and Steven, A. C. (2016). Localization of the Houdinisome (ejection proteins) inside the bacteriophage P22 virion by bubblegram imaging, mBio 7:e01152-16.
  6. Molloy, E., Casjens, S., Cox, C., Maxson, T., Ethridge, N., Margos, G., Fingerle, V., and Mitchell, D. (2015). Identification of the minimal cytolytic unit for streptolysin S and an expansion of the toxin family.  BMC Microbiol. 15:141. .
  7. Bauer, D., Li, D., Huffman, J., Homa, F. L., Wilson, K., Leavitt, J. C., Casjens, S. R., Baines, J., and Evilevitch, A. (2015). Exploring the balance between DNA pressure and capsid stability in herpes and phage. J. Virol. 89: 9288-9298.
  8. Grose, J. and Casjens, S. (2014). Understanding the enormous diversity of bacteriophages: the tailed phages that infect the bacterial family EnterobacteriaceaeVirology 468-470: 421-443.
  9. Bearson, B., Allen, H., Brunelle, B., Lee, I., Casjens, S., and Stanton, T. (2014). The agricultural antibiotic carbadox induces phage-mediated gene transfer in Salmonella. Front. Microbiol 5:52.
  10. Parent, K., Erb, M., Cardone, G., Nguyen, K., Gilcrease, E., Porcek, N., Pogliano, J., Baker, T., and Casjens, S. (2014). OmpA and OmpC are critical host factors for bacteriophage Sf6 entry in Shigella.  Molec. Microbiol. 92: 47-60. .
  11. Parent, K., Tang, J., Cardone, G., Gilcrease, E. Janssen, M., Olson, N., Casjens, S., and Baker, T. (2014). Three-dimensional reconstructions of the bacteriophage CUS-3 virion reveal a conserved coat protein I-domain but a distinct tailspike receptor-binding domain. Virology 464-465: 55-66.
  12. Leavitt, J.C., Gilcrease, E.B., Wilson, K. and Casjens, S.R. (2013). Function and horizontal transfer of the small terminase subunit of the tailed bacteriophage Sf6 DNA packaging nanomotor. Virology 440: 117-133.
  13. Leavitt, J.C., Gogokhia, L., Gilcrease. E.B., Bhardwaj, A., Cingolani, G., and Casjens. S.R. (2013). The tip of the tail needle affects the rate of DNA delivery by bacteriophage P22. PLoS One 8:e70936.
  14. Wiles, T., Norton, P., Smith, S., Lewis, A., Mobley, H., Casjens, S., and Mulvey, M. (2013). A phyletically rare gene promotes the niche-specific fitness of an E. coli pathogen during bacteremia.  PLoS Pathogens 9: e1003175.
  15. Brisson, D., Zhou, W., Jutras, B., Casjens, S., and Stevenson, B. (2013).  Distribution of Lyme disease spirochete cp32 prophages and natural diversity among their lipoprotein-encoding erp loci. Appl. Environ. Micro.  79: 4115-4128.
  16. Mongodin, E., Casjens, S., Bruno, J., Xu, Y., Drabek, E., Riley, D., Cantarel, B., Pagan, P., Hernandez, H., Vargas, L., Dunn, J., Schutzer, S., Fraser-Liggett, C., Qiu. W., and Luft, B. (2013). Inter- and intra-specific pan-genomes of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato: Adaptive radiation and phylogenetic predictions.  BMC Genomics 14:693.
  17. Parent, K., Deedas, C., Egelman, E., Casjens, S.R., Baker, T., and Teschke, C. (2012). Stepwise molecular display utilizing icosahedral and helical complexes of phage coat and decoration proteins in the development of robust nanoscale display vehicles. Biomaterials33: 5628-5637.
  18. Casjens, S., and Molineux, I. (2012). Short non-contractile tail machines: adsorption and DNA delivery by the podoviruses. Adv Exp Med Biol (Viral molecular machines), Rossmann, M, Rao V, Eds., vol. 726, pp143-179.
  19. Parent, K., Gilcrease, E., Casjens, S., and Baker, T. (2012). Structural evolution of the P22-like phages: Comparison of Sf6 and P22 procapsid and virion architectures. Virology427: 177-188.
  20. Casjens, S., Mongodin, E., Qiu, W., Luft, B., Schutzer, S., Gilcrease, E., Huang, W., Vujadinovic, M., Aron, Vargas, L., Freeman, S., Radune, D., Wiedman, J., Dimitrov, G., Khouri, H., Sosa, J., Halpin, R., Dunn, J., and Fraser, C. (2012). Genome stability of Lyme disease spirochetes: comparative genomics of the Borrelia burgdoferi plasmids. PloS One7: e33280.
  21. Cortines, J., Weigele, P., Gilcrease, E., Casjens, S., and Teschke, C. (2011). Decoding bacteriophage P22 assembly: identification of two charged residues in scaffolding protein responsible for coat protein interaction. Virology421:1-11.
  22. Casjens, S. (2011). The DNA-packaging nanomotor of tailed bacteriophages. Nature Rev. Microbiol9: 647-657.
  23. Bjardwaj, A., Molineux, I., Casjens, S., and Cingolani, G. (2011). Atomic strucutre of bacteriophage Sf6 tail needle knob bound to L-glutamic acid. J Biol Chem286: 30867-30877.
  24. Casjens, S., and Thuman-Commike, P. (2011). Evolution of mosaic tailed bacteriophage genomes seen through the lens of phage P22 virion assembly. Virology411: 393-415.
  25. Tang, J., Lander, G., Olia, A., Rui, L., Casjens, S., Prevelige, P., Cingolani, G., Baker, T., and Johnson, J. (2011). Peering down the barrel of a bacteriophage portal - the genome packaging and release valve in P22. Structure19:496-502.
  26. Schutzer, S., Fraser-Liggett, C., Casjens, S., Qiu, W., Dunn, J., Mongodin, E., and Luft, B. (2011). Whole genome sequences of thirteen isolates of Borrelia burgdorferi. J Bacteriol193: 1018-1020.
  27. Zhao, H., Finch, C., Sequeira, R., Johnson, B., Johnson, J., Casjens, S., and Tang, L. (2010). Crystal structure of the DNA-recognition component of the bacterial virus Sf6 genome-packaging machine. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 107: 1971-1976.
Last Updated: 8/3/17