In order to determine the current situation and to evaluate the human to human transmission of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in Northern France, the genetic polymorphism of strains was studied by using IS6110 fingerprint. One hundred and fifty-eight cases of bacteriologically confirmed tuberculosis were analyzed. One hundred and twenty-six patients (82%) were infected with genetically different isolates and 28 isolates (18%) were grouped into 14 clusters. No risk factors for recent Mycobacterium tuberculosis infections such as age, HIV status, immigrants, living in big cities were identified. This study shows that there was no major epidemic situation of tuberculosis in Northern France in 1995. Tuberculosis was characterized by a low proportion of HIV positive patients and a high proportion of elderly patients.