Lytic Proteins and Dr Paul Jackson

Hi! My name is Nick Maley and I am a 6th grader at Whitehill School. I am part of the whitehill robotics team and as part of the First Lego League tournament we are trying to find solutions to e.coli in milk. We saw your article about your research on e.coli. and lytic protein, and we were wondering if you could inject the proteins right in the cow, and if that would get rid of the e.coli at the source? If we did that, would the lytic proteins stay in the cow and innoculate it, or would it be passed out of the cow?

Thanks in advance for your answer!

From Nick Maley


Jackson, Paul J.

Hello Nick, The proteins would be destroyed by the cow’s immune system if injected into the cow.  The best result would be in inject such a protein directly into the milk although we have done no studies to determine how long it will last in milk or even if it will work properly in milk.



Carol Maley <> Sat, Jan 14, 2012 at 8:35 PM

To: “Jackson, Paul J.” <>
Hi Dr.Paul, Its Nick     Thank you for your quick response! You have helped us alot! We have some more questions. Like if we put the proteins in the milk what effect would they have on humans?
thank you!
From Nick


Jackson, Paul J. <> Tue, Jan 17, 2012 at 8:32 AM

To: Carol Maley <>
Hi Nick, Probably no effect at all on humans.  The proteins specifically attack a part of the bacterial cell wall.  That chemical bond is found in the bacteria’s cell wall but no comparable chemical bond exists in human cells, so the protein should not have an impact on humans.  Moreover, once the milk is ingested, the protein would be destroyed once it entered the digestive system – just like any other protein that someone consumed. Paul

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