RAPD-PCR fingerprinting and ARDRA riboprinting revealed polymorphism within P. septaurelia strains from Russia (4 strains from Lower Volga Basin), and one strain from USA, Florida. However, the first method showed the existence of four RAPD genotypes while the second revealed only two groups of strains with different band patterns. All studied strains had a high percentage of surviving hybrid clones in the inter-strain crosses, with little differentiation of strains within species. Intra-species differentiation of strains in RAPD band patterns may be connected with the degree of inbreeding for the studied species. Species of the P. aurelia complex can be arranged according to the degree of inbreeding characteristic for each, which is correlated with the degree of DNA polymorphism revealed by the RAPD method from extreme inbreeders (e.g. P. sexaurelia), moderate inbreeders (e.g. P. triaurelia) to weak inbreeders (e.g. P. pentaurelia). P. septaurelia of the P. aurelia complex should be included in the group of extreme inbreeder.