DNA polymorphisms in different species and strains of the genus Candida were assessed by amplifying genomic DNA with single nonspecific primers. This PCR method employed an arbitrary primer (the 10-mer AP3), a primer derived from the intergenic spacer regions (T3B), and the microsatellite primers (GTG)5 and (AC)10. Distinctive and reproducible sets of amplification products were observed for 26 different Candida and 8 other fungal species. The numbers and sizes of the amplification products were characteristic for each species. All yeast species tested could be clearly distinguished by their amplification patterns. With all primers, PCR fingerprints also displayed intraspecies variability. However, PCR profiles obtained from different strains of the same species were far more similar than those derived from different Candida species. By comparing species-specific PCR fingerprints of clinical isolates with those of reference strains, clinical isolates could be identified to the species level even if they could not be identified by routine biochemical methods
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