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Int J Syst Evol Microbiol. 2006 May;56(Pt 5):937-45.

Genetic relatedness within the genus Campylobacter inferred from rpoB sequences.

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  • 1Institute of Veterinary Bacteriology, University of Bern, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland.

Abstract

The genus Campylobacter comprises 17 species, some of which are important animal and human pathogens. To gain more insight into the genetic relatedness of this genus and to improve the molecular tools available for diagnosis, a universal sequencing approach was established for the gene encoding the beta-subunit of RNA polymerase (rpoB) for the genus Campylobacter. A total of 59 strains, including the type strains of currently recognized species as well as field isolates, were investigated in the study. A primer set specific for Campylobacter species enabled straightforward amplification and sequencing of a 530 bp fragment of the rpoB gene. The 16S rRNA gene sequences of all of the strains were determined in parallel. A good congruence was obtained between 16S rRNA and rpoB gene sequence-based trees within the genus Campylobacter. The branching of the rpoB tree was similar to that of the 16S rRNA gene tree, even though a few discrepancies were observed for certain species. The resolution of the rpoB gene within the genus Campylobacter was generally much higher than that of the 16S rRNA gene sequence, resulting in a clear separation of most species and even some subspecies. The universally applicable amplification and sequencing approach for partial rpoB gene sequence determination provides a powerful tool for DNA sequence-based discrimination of Campylobacter species.

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