A total of 101 staphylococcal strains were ribotyped using EcoRI and HindIII as restriction enzymes and plasmid pBA2 as the rDNA probe. Isolates from 10 newly described staphylococcal taxa were among those examined. All the ribotypes were added to our database, Staph DB, which now contains the sizes of the bands of 135 EcoRI and 120 HindIII ribotypes from 408 strains belonging to 42 staphylococcal taxa. The relatedness of ribotypes was evaluated by using the Dice coefficient. The ribotypes, and thus the strains, were clustered by the unweighted pair group method with averages (UPGMA). Separation into clusters correlated well with the delineation of the staphylococcal species but not with that of the different subspecies. No discrimination was possible between Staphylococcus vitulinus and Staphylococcus pulvereri. Ecovar-specific groups were evident within Staphylococcus intermedius and Staphylococcus hyicus. The data increase the usefulness of rRNA gene restriction site polymorphism analysis for staphylococcal taxonomy.


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