D-type cyclins and cyclin E represent two very distinct classes of mammalian G1 cyclins. We have generated a mouse strain in which the coding sequences of the cyclin D1 gene (Ccnd1) have been deleted and replaced by those of human cyclin E (CCNE). In the tissues and cells of these mice, the expression pattern of human cyclin E faithfully reproduces that normally associated with mouse cyclin D1. The replacement of cyclin D1 with cyclin E rescues all phenotypic manifestations of cyclin D1 deficiency and restores normal development in cyclin D1-dependent tissues. Thus, cyclin E can functionally replace cyclin D1. Our analyses suggest that cyclin E is the major downstream target of cyclin D1.