Insertion sequence typing of Mycobacterium tuberculosis: characterization of a widespread subtype with a single copy of IS6110

Tuber Lung Dis. 1994 Dec;75(6):435-40. doi: 10.1016/0962-8479(94)90117-1.


DNA fingerprinting with the insertion sequence IS6110 (also known as IS986) has become established as a major tool for investigating the spread of tuberculosis. Most strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis have multiple copies of IS6110, but a small minority carry a single copy only. We have examined selected strains from Malaysia, Tanzania and Oman, in comparison with M. bovis isolates and BCG strains carrying one or two copies of IS6110. The insertion sequence appears to be present in the same position in all these strains, which suggests that in these organisms the element is defective in transposition and that the loss of transposability may have occurred at an early stage in the evolution of the M. tuberculosis complex.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Fingerprinting*
  • DNA Probes
  • DNA Transposable Elements / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mycobacterium bovis / genetics
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / genetics*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Species Specificity


  • DNA Probes
  • DNA Transposable Elements

Associated data

  • GENBANK/S76966