Bacteriophages isolated from dairy farm mitigated Klebsiella pneumoniae-induced inflammation in bovine mammary epithelial cells cultured in vitro

Abstract Background Klebsiella pneumoniae, an environmental pathogen causing mastitis in dairy cattle, is often resistant to antibiotics. K. pneumoniae was used as the host bacteria to support bacteriophage replication; 2 bacteriophages, CM8-1 and SJT-2 were isolated and considered to have therapeutic potential. In the present study, we determined the ability of these 2 bacteriophages to mitigate cytotoxicity, pathomorphological changes, inflammatory responses and apoptosis induced by K. pneumoniae (bacteriophage to K. pneumoniae MOI 1:10) in bovine mammary epithelial cells (bMECs) cultured in vitro. Results Bacteriophages reduced bacterial adhesion and invasion and cytotoxicity (lactate dehydrogenase release). Morphological changes in bMECs, including swelling, shrinkage, necrosis and hematoxylin and eosin staining of cytoplasm, were apparent 4 to 8 h after infection with K. pneumoniae, but each bacteriophage significantly suppressed damage and decreased TNF-α and IL-1β concentrations. K. pneumoniae enhanced mRNA expression of TLR4, NF-κB, TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, caspase-3, caspase-9 and cyt-c in bMECs and increased apoptosis of bMECs, although these effects were mitigated by treatment with either bacteriophage for 8 h. Conclusions Bacteriophages CM8-1 and SJT-2 mitigated K. pneumoniae-induced inflammation in bMECs cultured in vitro. Therefore, the potential of these bacteriophages for treating mastitis in cows should be determined in clinical trials.
BMC Veterinary Research. 2021 Jan 19;17(1):37