Multilocus enzyme electrophoresis methods for the analysis of bacterial population genetic structure

B. D. Eardly

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

3 Citations (SciVal)


This chapter provides specific information on multilocus enzyme electrophoresis (MLEE) techniques that have proven to be especially useful in the study of Rhizobium and other soil bacteria. The genes examined in MLEE analyses are usually "housekeeping" enzyme genes, or genes that occur in basic metabolic pathways. In addition to providing information on genetic relatedness and genetic diversity in natural bacterial populations, MLEE data are useful in assessing the importance of previous chromosomal recombination in a population. These analyses are based on the premise that, when blocks of genes recombine repeatedly in a population, alleles at different enzyme loci eventually become randomized. Genetic diversity estimates can be calculated for populations and individual loci using MLEE allele frequency data. There are numerous examples of population genetic studies in the literature that may serve as useful references for interpreting MLEE data. Publication-quality dendograms illustrating relationships between strains can be drawn with a variety of computer programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMethods of Soil Analysis, Part 2
Subtitle of host publicationMicrobiological and Biochemical Properties
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9780891188650
ISBN (Print)9780891188100
StatePublished - Sep 11 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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