Three major components of Malassezia globosa were isolated from 2-ME extracts of this fungus by ion-exchange column chromatography and are referred to as Malg46a, Malg46b and Malg67, respectively. IgE antibodies to these components in the sera of patients with AD were detected by immunoblots. In Western blot, IgE antibodies to Malg46b were most frequently detected in the sera of AD patients. Dot blot with the Malg46b-containing fraction immunologically reacted with 69% of the sera of the patients, and with 83% of the sera of the patients who were positive for IgE antibodies to the 2-ME extract of M. globosa in the Western blot. The intensities generated for each dot correlated well with the total intensities generated for the 2-ME extract of M. globosa in the Western blot (r=0.763). In the lectin blot, Con A reacted with both Malg46a and Malg46b but not with Malg67. The polyclonal antibody to Malg46b reacted strongly only with the 2-ME extract of M. globosa and reacted slightly with M. restricta. In conclusion, a glycoprotein, Malg46b of M. globosa, is dominantly expressed in this fungus and is a possible major antigen for IgE antibodies in patients with AD.