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Vet Microbiol. 1993 Oct;37(1-2):1-17.

Use of a repetitive element isolated from Mycobacterium tuberculosis in hybridization studies with Mycobacterium bovis: a new tool for epidemiological studies of bovine tuberculosis.

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Animal Health Laboratories, Department of Agriculture, South Perth, WA, Australia.


Typing of M. bovis isolates for epidemiological purposes is possible using restriction endonuclease analysis (REA). However, the DNA fragment patterns obtained are complex and difficult to analyse due to the large number of bands produced. In an attempt to develop a less complicated typing scheme two DNA probes were used in hybridization studies to detect restriction fragment length polymorphisms (RFLP) in M. bovis. An oligonucleotide probe which matches part of the insertion sequence IS6110 produced few bands and failed to discriminate between bovine isolates of M. bovis. A probe prepared from a highly repeated DNA sequence, cloned from M. tuberculosis when used on southern blots of AluI digested M. bovis DNA, resulted in a discriminating typing scheme which was easier to perform and analyse than the REA. The RFLP typing scheme identified 27 different strains from a total of 36 isolates of M. bovis and 7 reference strains from the M. tuberculosis complex. Using REA, 24 types were identified using BclI and PvuII digests and 23 different types using BstEII digests. When results of all 3 enzyme digests were combined, the REA identified 27 types from the same strains. Ten isolates of M. bovis from 5 properties involved in an outbreak of bovine tuberculosis were all identified as the same type with both techniques.

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