Deoxyribonucleic acids (DNAs) of selected strains of the complex, including strains of BCG, , and , were isolated and analyzed spectrophotometrically. The genome molecular weight and the guanine-plus-cytosine content of the DNA samples were approximately 1.9 × 10and 62.9 mol%, respectively. DNA relatedness among the strains was studied by both spectrophometric DNA hybridization and restriction endonuclease cleavage methods. All strains of the four species showed more than 90% DNA relatedness, except for slightly lower levels (85 to 89%) of relatedness between and some strains of BCG, or . The distribution patterns of the DNA fragments produced with restriction enzymes, such as RI, RV, II, I, and I, were indistinguishable upon agarose gel electrophoresis. In contrast, the levels of DNA relatedness between and other slowly growing mycobacteria, including , and , were significantly heterogeneous, ranging from 9 to 53%. My data indicate the extremely close evolutionary relationship among four species of the complex.


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