Alleles of the CAG and the GGC repeat in the first exon of the human androgen receptor (AR) gene have been shown to be associated with the risk of (advanced) prostate cancer. These studies had been carried out in the United States. We have analysed these polymorphisms in a French-German collection of 105 controls, 132 sporadic cases, and a sample of prostate cancer families comprising 85 affected and 46 not affected family members. The allele distributions were very similar in all four groups and chi square statistics on contingency tables did not detect any significant differences. The relative risk (odds ratio, OR) were calculated using logistic regression and did not reach significance despite sufficient numbers of patients and controls. Typical results were OR = 1.007; 95% Confidence Interval (CI) 0.97-1.1, P = 0.87 for CAG as continuous variable and OR = 1.2 (95% CI 0.7-2.0), P = 0.47 for CAG classes < 22 and > = 22 repeats. Similar results were obtained for subgroups defined by age or Gleason score. We conclude that these polymorphisms can not be used as predictive parameters for prostate cancer in the French or German population.