Based on sensitization following intranasal antigen administration, previous investigations have suggested greater absorption of allergens through the nasal mucous membranes of atopic than of nonatopic subjects. In this study mucosal absorption was assessed more directly by determining the capacity of allergens applied intranasally to elicit cutaneous Prausnitz-Küstner (P-K) reactions in nonatopic persons as compared with asymptomatic atopic subjects sensitive to other allergens. Two series of reaginic human serum dilutions were injected intracutaneously in recipients backs, and 48 hours later one series was challenged intracutaneously with test allergen. After the responses had been recorded, concentrated allergenic extract was sprayed into the nose and the second series of P-K sites observed for reactivity. Sometimes these P-K sites were rechallenged intracutaneously the following day to determine passive transfer neutralization. Two allergens were studied: bovine ribonuclease (RNase) and peanut extract. Two sera containing peanut reagins and one with RNase antibodies were each used in 10 to 11 atopic and 9 to 11 nonatopic recipients. The atopic group failed to show greater or more rapid absorption of either allergen through the nose based on the highest serum dilution reacting after nasal challenge. the speed of the reaction, the ratio of the titer by nasal challenge to the intracutaneous titer, or passive transfer neutralization. Controls showed that the results were not influenced by systemic absorption of allergen employed for intracutaneous tests. Drinking the amount of peanut extract applied intranasally did not elicit P-K reactions.