Various strains of were compared by bacterial restriction-endonuclease DNA analysis (BRENDA). Field strains of serovar isolated from domestic animals in New Zealand, Australia and Northern Ireland were indistinguishable from one another but differed strikingly from the reference strain Hardjoprajitno. Similarly, field isolates of and differed from their serovar reference strains, probably owing to a difference in epidemiological niche. Subdivision of these serovars into distinct subtypes as defined by BRENDA is therefore useful and justified. In contrast, analysis of serovars and shows that field and reference strains were identical, or differed only by a single band.

It is suggested that BRENDA will overcome many of the problems associated with serological methods of identifying serovars and allow more precise definition of epidemiological relationships between strains and their hosts.


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