A total of 101 strains of Salmonella Enteritidis phage types (PT) 1, 4, 6, and 8 from Denmark, England and Spain were studied by PFGE to elucidate genetic relationships among strains isolated from animal, human and environmental sources between 1983 and 1997. Analysis with Xba I, Bin I and Spe I enzymes showed that the power of discrimination of this method was increased by the combination of the three enzymes (D=0.802), subdividing the strains into 28 genomic groups or genotypes. Many of the PT1, PT4, and PT6 strains from the three countries shared the same PFGE combination profile A1-A1-A1, confirming the close relationship among these phage types and the protracted spread of a single clone over a large geographical area. In general, strains from Denmark showed more variation in their PFGE profiles than those from England and Spain. PT4 strains exhibited genetic homogeneity in the three countries independently of their sources and period of isolation. Spe I gave the highest index of discrimination among PT6 strains as evidenced by a variety of PFGE profiles. The data clearly confirmed that PT8 strains isolated in the three countries were of a unique clonal origin, and the PFGE combination profile A10-A10-A1 was predominant and specific for this phage type. It is concluded that PFGE, in combination with phage typing, represents a suitable tool for the epidemiological typing of Salmonella Enteritidis strains which could be used for investigations or surveillance of the international spread of these clones.