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Clin Infect Dis. 1997 Aug;25(2):260-6.

A clinical and bacteriologic investigation of invasive streptococcal infections in Japan on the basis of serotypes, toxin production, and genomic DNA fingerprints.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Nagoya University School of Medicine, Japan.


In a survey of invasive streptococcal infections in Japan, we analyzed isolates of Streptococcus pyogenes collected between 1992 and 1994. Genomic DNA fingerprints produced by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) were compared by computer-assisted analysis. Conventional serologic M types were subdivided into PFGE types showing close genetic similarity. Among the 42 isolates from patients with invasive diseases, 16 PFGE types were identified and genetic diversity was clearly demonstrated. Identical fingerprints were observed in both invasive and noninvasive isolates. Only 43% of invasive isolates produced streptococcal pyrogenic exotoxin A (SPE A), and 31% did not contain the speA gene. These findings suggest that the dissemination of a specific clone is not sufficient to explain all cases of these diseases in Japan and pose a question as to the role of SPE A as a major virulent factor. Bacterial factors other than SPE A and host factors should be considered in evaluation of the pathogenesis of the diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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