Comparative analysis of genetic variability among Borrelia burgdorferi isolates from Europe and the United States by restriction enzyme analysis, gene restriction fragment length polymorphism, and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis

B. C. Zingg, J. F. Anderson, R. C. Johnson, Rance B Lefebvre

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The genomes of 62 North American and European Borrelia burgdorferi isolates were examined by restriction endonuclease analysis (REA), gene probe restriction fragment length polymorphism, and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Hybridization of restriction fragments with the immunologically relevant 83-kDa antigen gene revealed polymorphisms and divided the isolates into three major groups. Group I included all but two of the American isolates and some of the European isolates. One of two Californian isolates (DN 127) and one Ixodes dammini isolate from New York (strain 25015), previously described as atypical, were distinct from the isolates in the three groups. Plasmid profile analysis and REA, the method with the highest level of discrimination, revealed extensive heterogeneity among isolates of the same major group. Our study demonstrates the usefulness of the 83-kDa antigen gene probe for dividing the isolates into major genogroups, whereas REA and plasmid profile analysis allow for a distinction of individual strains within these groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3115-3122
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Clinical Microbiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1993


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)

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