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Stability of Related Human and Chicken Campylobacter jejuni Genotypes after Passage through Chick Intestine Studied by Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis

  • Marja-Liisa Hänninen
  • Marjaana Hakkinen
  • Hilpi Rautelin
American Society for Microbiology
Publication Date
May 01, 1999
  • Biology


The genomic stability of 12 Campylobacter jejuni strains consisting of two groups of human and chicken isolates was studied by analysis of their PFGE (pulsed-field gel electrophoresis) patterns after passage through newly hatched chicks’ intestines. The patterns of SmaI, SalI, and SacII digests remained stable after intestinal passage, except for those of two strains. One originally human strain, FB 6371, changed its genotype from II/A (SmaI/SacII) to I/B. Another strain, BTI, originally isolated from a chicken, changed its genotype from I/B to a new genotype. The genomic instability of the strains was further confirmed by SalI digestion and ribotyping of the HaeIII digests. In addition, heat-stable serotype 57 of strain FB 6371 changed to serotype 27 in all isolates with new genotypes but remained unchanged in an isolate with the original genotype. Serotype 27 of strain BTI remained stable. Our study suggests that during intestinal colonization, genomic rearrangement, as demonstrated by changed PFGE and ribopatterns, may occur.

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