Table 2.

Survey of the characteristics of several currently used microbial typing methodsa

Typing methodbTypeabilityReproducibilityDiscriminatory powerEase of performanceEase of InterpretationGeneral availabilityCost
Phenotypic
 P1. Antimicrobial susceptibilityGoodGoodPoorExcellentExcellentExcellentLow
 P2. Manual biotypingGoodPoorPoorExcellentExcellentExcellentLow
 P3. Automated biotypingGoodGoodPoorGoodGoodVariableMedium
 P4. SerotypingVariableGoodVariableGoodGoodVariableMedium
 P5. Bacteriophage typingVariableFairVariablePoorPoorExcellentMedium
 P6. PAGEExcellentGoodGoodExcellentFairGoodMedium
 P7. ImmunoblottingExcellentGoodGood/excellentGoodFairVariableMedium
 P8. MLEEExcellentExcellentGoodGoodExcellentVariableHigh
Genotypic
 G1. Plasmid profilesVariableFairVariableFairGoodExcellentMedium
 G2. Plasmid REAVariableExcellentGoodGoodExcellentExcellentMedium
 G3. Chromosomal REAExcellentVariableVariableGoodFairVariableMedium
 G4. RibotypingExcellentExcellentGoodGoodGoodVariableHigh
 G5. PFGEExcellentExcellentExcellentGoodGoodVariableHigh
 G6. PCRExcellentFairExcellentGoodFairGoodMedium
 G7. AFLPExcellentGoodExcellentGoodFairLowHigh
 G8. BT/Spoligo typingExcellentExcellentExcellentGoodExcellentLowHigh
 G9. DNA sequencingOptimalExcellentExcellentPoorExcellentLowHigh
  • a Some data are from reference64.

  • b PAGE, polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis; REA, restriction endonuclease analysis; PFGE: pulsed-field gel electrophoresis; AFLP, amplification fragment length polymorphism; BT, binary typing (122, 123); Spoligo, spotted oligonucleotide reversed hybridization (48). The last two techniques were developed for single species. P1 to G9 are codes for the individual procedures and are used in table 3 as well.