Determination of the chromosomal size of three different strains of Enterococcus faecalis and one strain of Enterococcus faecium

DNA Cell Biol. 1992 May;11(4):331-5. doi: 10.1089/dna.1992.11.331.


Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis was used to determine the chromosomal size of three different strains of Enterococcus faecalis and one strain of Enterococcus faecium. The size determinations of OG1X, a strain of E. faecalis widely used in many laboratories for genetic studies, using Sma I, Not I, and Sfi I alone or in combination, ranged from 2,750 to 2,761 kb. Using the same enzymes as with OG1X, the size of HH-67, a plasmid-free clinical isolate of E. faecalis, was determined to be 2,170-2,288 kb and the size of JH2-2, an E. faecalis recipient strain, ranged from 2,008 to 2,135 kb. The size range generated for GE-1, a plasmid-free E. faecium strain, with the use of Sma I, Not I, and Apa I was 2,045-2,155 kb. Although OG1X differed in size from the other three enterococci, each individual enterococcal strain generated reproducible results in different experiments. However, for both E. faecalis OG1X and E. faecium GE-1, one of the enzymes used generated a considerably smaller molecular size than that generated by the other two enzymes. The discrepancy was due to visually undiscernible comigrating fragments, and serves to point out a potential source of error if fewer than two enzymes are used to size a genome. The size discrepancies were resolved by digesting individual fragments with a second enzyme. The molecular sizes of these enterococcal strains are larger than that recently reported for Campylobacter, smaller than that of Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and similar (OG1X) or smaller (JH2-2, HH67, and GE-1) than the 2,819-kb reported for Streptococcus mutans.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Chromosomes, Bacterial / chemistry*
  • Chromosomes, Bacterial / metabolism
  • Deoxyribonucleases, Type II Site-Specific / metabolism
  • Electrophoresis, Gel, Pulsed-Field
  • Enterococcus faecalis / genetics*
  • Enterococcus faecium / genetics*
  • Genome, Bacterial*


  • Deoxyribonucleases, Type II Site-Specific