MT78, an avian pathogenic strain of serogroup O2, produces a variant form of type 1 fimbriae with distinct antigenic properties and apparent mol. wt of the major subunit. The gene cluster of strain MT78 was cloned and its sequence was determined in a region spanning upstream of to the beginning of Whereas most genes were well conserved relative to genes previously described, comparison of the gene from strain MT78 with homologous sequences from other strains of and revealed that most differences were clustered in four well defined regions. A PCR assay, based upon these variable sequences, allowed amplification of a fragment of gene which is specific for most O2 strains. In addition, the sequence of the previously uncharacterised gene , which is located between genes and , was determined.


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