Allelic variations in the chromosomal genome of 120 isolates of motile Aeromonas (A. hydrophila, A. sobria and A. caviae) and eight reference strains with one Plesiomonas shigelloides were assessed by analysis of electrophoretically demonstrable polymorphism in 16 genes encoding metabolic enzymes. The strains were collected from humans (n= 59) and from the aquatic environment (n= 61) in canton Tessin, Switzerland. Clustering of the electrophoretic types (ET) from a matrix of pairwise genetic distances, based on the 16 enzyme loci, confirmed the genetic distinctness of the three species. Furthermore, A. hydrophila and A. sobria were divided in three and two groups respectively. For each species clinical strains were well differentiated from those collected in the environment.