A total of 152 strains of Streptococcus pyogenes were isolated from patients with pharyngitis, scarlet fever, skin infection, or invasive streptococcal infections in Seoul, Korea from January 1988 to December 1999. All isolates were epidemiologically characterized to decide phenotypes by T protein serotype and serum opacity factor (OF) detection. Genetic diversity of the isolates were analyzed by emm genotyping and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). T protein serotype showed 17 kinds in distribution and T12 (40.1% of study strains), T4 (19.1%), and T1 (7.9%) were the prevalent ones. When sources of S. pyogenes isolates were analyzed by T serotype distribution, T12 type was predominant in pharyngitis and skin infection isolates which contributed to 30 strains (49.2%) and 11 strains (18.0%), respectively. When T serotype of S. pyogenes isolates were analyzed by emm genotype distribution, of the 61 isolates of T12 type, 48 strains (78.7%) belonged to the emm type 12 (M12) and of the 29 isolates of T4 type, 27 strains (93.1%) belonged to the emm genotype 4 (M4). PFGE of genomic DNA of different emm genotype (emm12, emm4 and emm1) showed distinctive patterns. When the DNA of same emm gene type isolates were analyzed genetic relatedness by PFGE pattern, emm4, emm1, and emm12 types showed over 90%, 75%, and 70% of genetic similarity, respectively. Therefore, it was suggested that these emm genotype isolates were closely related genetically whereas among the isolates of other emm genotypes showed less than 30% of genetic similarity. Show genotypes are more diverse in comparison with phenotypes. In even epidemiologically unrealated isolates, genetic subtypes appeared correlated. The phenotypic and genotypic analysis used in the study were discriminative and appropriate for epidemiological study of S. pyogenes.