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J Clin Microbiol. 2001 Oct;39(10):3609-16.

Molecular typing of Salmonella serotypes prevalent in animals in England: assessment of methodology.

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Department of Bacterial Diseases, Veterinary Laboratories Agency-Weybridge, Addlestone, Surrey KT15 3NB, United Kingdom.


Salmonella enterica serotypes Derby, Mbandaka, Montevideo, Livingstone, and Senftenberg were among the 10 most prevalent serotypes isolated from farm animals in England and Wales in 1999. These serotypes are of potential zoonotic relevance; however, there is currently no "gold standard" fingerprinting method for them. A collection of isolates representing the former serotypes and serotype Gold Coast were analyzed using plasmid profiling, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE), and ribotyping. The success of the molecular methods in identifying DNA polymorphisms was different for each serotype. Plasmid profiling was particularly useful for serotype Derby isolates, and it also provided a good level of discrimination for serotype Senftenberg. For most serotypes, we observed a number of nontypeable plasmid-free strains, which represents a limitation of this technique. Fingerprinting of genomic DNA by ribotyping and PFGE produced a significant variation in results, depending on the serotype of the strain. Both PstI/SphI ribotyping and XbaI-PFGE provided a similar degree of strain differentiation for serotype Derby and serotype Senftenberg, only marginally lower than that achieved by plasmid profiling. Ribotyping was less sensitive than PFGE when applied to serotype Mbandaka or serotype Montevideo. Serotype Gold Coast isolates were found to be nontypeable by XbaI-PFGE, and a significant proportion of them were found to be plasmid free. A similar situation applies to a number of serotype Livingstone isolates which were nontypeable by plasmid profiling and/or PFGE. In summary, the serotype of the isolates has a considerable influence in deciding the best typing strategy; a single method cannot be relied upon for discriminating between strains, and a combination of typing methods allows further discrimination.

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