Bacteriophages have been induced from strains in the serocomplex by exposure of cultures to UV light or treatment with mitomycin C. One-sixth of the strains examined, representing all but one of the 31 authenticated serotypes, were found to possess phages lytic for a indicator strain. Four single-plaque isolated phages, TM4, TM9, TM10 and TM20, were purified and shown to have a similar morphology on electron micrographs. They had an isometric head of diameter 50-58 nm and a flexible non-contractile tail about 170 nm in length with a terminal bulb. All had an identical buoyant density in CsCl of 1.521 g cm and extreme sensitivity to chloroform. The induced phages differed in host range and possessed the unique ability to lyse other members of the serocomplex. Interest in these phages centres on a possible role in mediating genetic interrelationships between members of the serocomplex.


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