Cholecystokinin (CCK) and gastrin belong to one family of gastrointestinal peptides that regulate a variety of functions in the gastrointestinal tract and in the central nervous system. On the basis of pharmacological, physiological and molecular studies, receptors for these peptides can be divided into at least two different types: CCKA- and CCKB-receptors. CCKA- and CCKB-receptors are both G-protein coupled receptors and are highly conserved between species. Molecular techniques have revealed a distinct species- and tissue-specific variation in receptor expression and pharmacology. In addition, previously unknown targets for CCK and gastrin such as the kidney were identified. This review discusses the physiological functions of the hormones CCK and gastrin and their receptors. The molecular structure of these receptors and the results of recent structure-function analysis are reviewed.