This book, Bacteriophages in health and disease, is an effort to provide an introduction to the breadth of roles that phages play or can play in our everyday lives. To capture this variety of phage roles in human conditions, both natural and applied, the book is divided into three parts. A brief introduction to various concepts and terminology associated with phages is provided in chapter 1. Part I (chapters 2-6) considers the role of phages in the natural state. That is, where phages are, how they contribute directly to disease, the underlying mechanism by which phages do this, and how they can contribute indirectly to disease, that is, to pathogen evolution. Part II (chapters 7-11) considers various phage-based technologies other than the use of whole phages to combat bacterial infections (i.e. besides phage therapy). This includes in particular the use of both modified and 'disembodied' phage parts. Phages thus can serve as carriers and delivery vehicles of DNA and also of other chemicals, including serving as vectors for either gene therapy or DNA vaccines. Part III (chapters 12-17) covers phage-based antibacterial strategies. It includes chapters on: phage translocation, safety and immunomodulation; phage therapy of wounds and related purulent infections; phage therapy of non-wound infections; phage-based enzybiotics; and phage-based control of bacterial pathogens in food. The final chapter of this book is targeted to would-be phage therapy experimentalists, one that considers, in light of phage properties, how phage therapy protocols may be developed in terms of the use of animal models of bacterial disease.
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