Summary: The internal spacer region (ISR) between the 16S and 23S rRNS genes of was investigated by PCR fragment length typing and DNA sequencing of clinical and chicken wild-type isolates. PCR fragment length typing showed one fragment of 859 nt in length for the 12 strains of investigated. Thirty-six of the subsp. strains possessed one fragment, which varied in size between 727 and 802 nt. Three strains showed two fragments between 501 and 923 nt. Strains of subsp. and possessed one or two fragments with lengths different from those of and subsp. DNA sequences were obtained from 54 nt downstream of up to of four strains of eight strains of subsp. and one strain each of subsp. and selected to represent the different biotypes of ISR lengths determined by PCR fragment length typing and DNA sequencing corresponded for 12 strains. For two strains of PCR fragment length typing underestimated ISR lengths by 159 and 193 nt, probably related to incomplete resolution of the distal helical structures, which were not fully denatured during PAGE. For the 14 strains and the published subsp. sequence, the first 206-211 nt were conserved and included the two tRNA genes in the characteristic tRNA to tRNA order separated by a short 8-9 nt spacer region. Within the region downstream of tRNA, conserved regions were identified which allowed a separation of from and but not separation of from The 69-282 nt longer variable regions in strains allowed separation of this species from confirming results obtained by PCR typing. Certain nucleic acid positions in variable regions were related to the Lior biotypes. Sequence information from ISRs of more strains is needed to ascertain if separation of species and biotypes will be possible for diagnostic purposes.


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