Lipo-chitooligosaccharides produced by rhizobia are a class of signalling molecules that mediate recognition and nodule organogenesis in the legume-rhizobia symbiosis. Their synthesis is specified by the nodulation genes of rhizobia and hence they are commonly known as Nod factors. They are amphiphilic molecules and induce a variety of responses in the roots of the legume hosts. Studies using plant and rhizobial mutants and purified molecules suggest that Nod factors are recognized by more than one receptor. In this article, we review evidence about the affinity, specificity and location of these putative receptors and describe recent studies with regard to their identification.