Forty intestinal spirochaete strains were investigated for nucleotide sequences related to the locus from by Southern hybridization of chromosomal DNA using the locus from strain P18A as a probe and by PCR using primers internal to the gene. The intensity of the hybridization signal at high stringency and positive PCR results suggested that 12 strains possessed a similar nucleotide sequence. PCR was negative for another 12 strains and the hybridization signal obtained from 11 of these was weak and one was negative. All strains hybridized under low stringency conditions. These results indicated that there is variation among the loci of strains. Among seven strains of and the proposed species ‘’ and ‘’, hybridization was weak and no PCR products were obtained, suggesting that these species have sequences related to, but divergent from, the sequences of strains of . Both gene probe hybridization and PCR analysis of nine strains of the proposed new genus ’, including isolates from pigs and humans, gave negative results.


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