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Microb Drug Resist. 1995 Spring;1(1):35-42.

Relatedness among penicillin-binding protein 2b genes of Streptococcus mitis, Streptococcus oralis, and Streptococcus pneumoniae.

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Department of Medical Microbiology, University of the Witwatersrand Medical School, Johannesburg, South Africa.


Penicillin-binding protein (PBP) 2b similarities among Streptococcus mitis, S. oralis, and S. pneumoniae using DNA fingerprinting and sequencing were investigated. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed on 41 penicillin-susceptible and -resistant clinical isolates of S. mitis and S. oralis using the susceptible S. pneumoniae R6 PBP 2b primers. PCR products were then analyzed using Hinf I and Sty I restriction enzymes. Of 41 S. mitis/S. oralis isolates studied 15 strains produced a PCR product of a similar size to that of S. pneumoniae R6. On fingerprinting these 15 strains, 11 different patterns were seen using Sty I restriction enzyme and 12 different patterns with Hinf I. The PBP 2b genes of the S. mitis and S. oralis isolates studied were found to be very heterogenous. The PBP 2b genes of two S. mitis isolates, MICs 0.5 and 2 micrograms/ml, were sequenced. These PBP 2b genes were found to possess a mosaic structure when compared to those of other S. pneumoniae and viridans streptococcal species. Analysis of these mosaic blocks indicates that both S. mitis strains contain areas that originated from S. pneumoniae as well as regions of unknown origin. PBP 2b sequence comparisons of a susceptible S. oralis with reported sequences of S. pneumoniae R6 and S. mitis NCTC 10712 revealed what appears at this stage to be nucleotide regions unique to S. oralis. A penicillin-resistant S. oralis strain contained a pneumococcal region of 272 bp that was flanked by S. oralis sequences. These specific S. oralis regions have been located in PBP 2b genes of penicillin-resistant S. oralis and S. pneumoniae isolates described from Europe and South Africa.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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