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J Hosp Infect. 1996 Feb;32(2):135-45.

Discriminatory power and usefulness of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis in epidemiological studies of Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

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Laboratoire de Bactériologie-Hygiène, Faculté de médecine, Hôpital Jean Minjoz, Besançon, France.


We assessed the discriminatory power of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) for the analysis of DNA restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. We determined DraI PFGE-RFLP of DNA of unrelated clinical and environmental strains, and clinical strains isolated from two intensive care units of the Besançon University Hospital. The typeability and reproducibility was 100%. The discriminatory index was 0.998, and the DNA patterns were stable in vitro and in vivo. There was a very low correlation between PFGE-RFLP and traditional typing methods. The typeability, reproducibility, the high discriminatory power and the stability of PFGE-RFLP make this a valuable method to be used in conjunction with serotyping. Further standardization and quantitative interpretation are possible and should lead to this technique becoming a library typing system.

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