Heat-killed whole cells, purified cell walls, and the three main polymers isolated from cell walls of sp. 607, 14468 and 11758, were examined to find the receptor sites for phage GS-7. Among heat-killed whole cells of insusceptible species, adsorbed the phage at a higher rate than the susceptible sp. 607, whereas did not adsorb the phage at all, suggesting a distinction between phage-resistance (absence of receptor) and phage-immunity (presence of both receptor and repressor).

Each of the three polymers of the cell wall (the lipopolysaccharide of the outer layer, the lipopolysaccharide-lipoprotein complex of the middle layer and the lipopolysaccharide-mucopeptide or mucopeptide complex of the inner layer) contain receptor substances. The lipopolysaccharide moiety isolated from the lipopolysaccharide-lipoprotein complex adsorbed phage at the same rate as the whole complex; implying that the possible receptor substances were the lipopolysaccharide moieties of the three polymers. Delipidation of both cell wall and the lipopolysaccharide-mucopeptide complex resulted in a loss of phage-adsorbing capacity, suggesting that the lipid portion of the lipopolysaccharides may constitute the phage receptors.


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