An epidemiologically valuable typing method for Neisseria meningitidis by analysis of restriction fragment length polymorphisms

J Med Microbiol. 1991 May;34(5):265-70. doi: 10.1099/00222615-34-5-265.


A restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) typing method was developed for Neisseria meningitidis. A cloned EcoRI fragment from a Neisseria meningitidis Group B serotype 15P1.16 sulphonamide-resistant strain was used to probe Southern blots of total chromosomal DNA restriction fragments (enzyme AvaI). A group of 75 apparently unrelated organisms gave rise to 26 different restriction fragment length patterns and two different groups of epidemiologically related strains had RFLP patterns that were distinct for each group. The technique was highly reproducible and discriminatory. The RFLP data were compared with the results of serotyping and subtyping and isoenzyme electrophoretotyping. The RFLP data were consistent with those from the alternative typing methods; clones defined by isoenzyme analysis were subdivided by this technique. The use of RFLP typing by cloned probes should be of considerable epidemiological value.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Blotting, Southern
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA Probes
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Drug Resistance, Microbial / genetics
  • Electrophoresis
  • Epidemiologic Methods
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Isoenzymes / analysis
  • Neisseria meningitidis / classification*
  • Neisseria meningitidis / genetics
  • Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Serotyping / methods*
  • Species Specificity
  • Sulfonamides / pharmacology


  • DNA Probes
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Isoenzymes
  • Sulfonamides