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BMC Res Notes. 2013 Sep 8;6:359. doi: 10.1186/1756-0500-6-359.

Multilocus sequence typing (and phylogenetic analysis) of Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli strains isolated from clinical cases in Greece.

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Department of Biopathology and Clinical Microbiology, Athens Medical School, Aeginition Hospital, Vass, Sophias av, 72-74, Athens 115 28, Greece.



The molecular epidemiology of C. jejuni and C. coli clinical strains isolated from children with gastroenteritis, was investigated using the multilocus sequence typing method (MLST). This analysis establishes for the first time in Greece and constitutes an important tool for the epidemiological surveillance and control of Campylobacter infection in our country.


The MLST genotypes were compared with those gained by other typing methods (HS-typing, PFGE and FlaA typing) and were also phylogenetically analyzed, in order to uncover genetic relationships.


Among 68 C. jejuni strains, 41 different MLST-Sequence Types (MLST-STs) were found. Fifty six strains or 34 MLST-STs could be sorted into 15 different MLST-Sequence Type Complexes (MLST-STCs), while twelve strains or seven MLST-STs did not match any of the MLST-STCs of the database. Twenty C. coli strains belonged to 14 different MLST-STs. Eleven MLST-STs were classified in the same MLST-STC (828), and three were unclassifiable. There was no significant association between the MLST-STs and the results of the other typing methods.Phylogenetic analysis revealed that some strains, classified to the species of C. jejuni, formed a separate, phylogenetically distinct group. In eight strains some alleles belonging to the taxonomic cluster of C. jejuni, were also detected in C. coli and vice versa, a phenomenon caused by the genetic mosaic encountered inside the genus Campylobacter.


The MLST-ST determination proved to be a very useful tool for the typing as well as the identification of Campylobacter on the species level.

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