A gene from Mycoplasma hominis PG21 similar to the tuf gene encoding the elongation factor Tu (EF-Tu) of Escherichia coli was cloned and sequenced. The 1193-bp open reading frame flanked by a putative promoter and a potential stem-and-loop structure encoded a 44-kDa polypeptide. The tuf gene of M. hominis PG21 has the lowest G + C content seen in prokaryotes (38.2%). A gene (mhlmp1) encoding a variable surface exposed membrane protein (LMP1) was found downstream the 3' end of the tuf gene. It was found that the highly conserved tuf gene was linked to the highly variable mhlmp1 gene in 26 different M. hominis strains.