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Genome differences among varicella-zoster viruses isolated in Thailand.

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Department of Medical Sciences, Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi, Thailand.


The DNAs of 17 isolates of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) obtained from 17 Thai individuals with normal varicella or zoster infections (no underlying diseases) were compared by restriction endonuclease analysis using BglI, PstI, EcoRI, SmaI and BamHI. The DNA of the Japanese strain, Kawaguchi, was also conducted as a reference DNA. All of virus isolates were confirmed for existence of VZV and VZV-DNA by immunofluorescent test and DNA-hybridization, respectively. Almost all of the Thai epidemiologically unrelated isolates and the Kawaguchi strain could be individually differentiated using BglI, PstI, and EcoRI. The other two isolates were identical in restriction profiles even after five endonuclease digestions which SmaI and BamHI were the two more enzymes used, therefore, they could be discriminated totally into 16 strains from overall 17 isolates. These findings demonstrate the strain variation of wild-type varicella-zoster viruses isolated in Thailand.

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