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Genotyping of important medical or veterinary prokaryotes has become a very important tool during the last decades. Rapid development of fragment-separation and sequencing technologies has made many new genotyping strategies possible. Among these new methods is multilocus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA). Here we present an update on the use of MLVA in eight European countries (Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden). Researchers in Europe have been active in developing and implementing a large array of different assays. MLVA has been used as a typing tool in several contexts, from aiding in resolving outbreaks of food-borne bacteria to typing organisms that may pose a bioterrorist threat, as well as in scientific studies.


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