CD1 molecules are cell-surface glycoproteins with strong structural similarities to major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules, and studies in humans and mice have demonstrated that CD1 proteins perform the unique role of presenting lipid antigens to T lymphocytes. Our previous studies have shown that guinea-pigs, unlike the muroid rodents, have an extended family of group 1 CD1 genes. In the current study, we raised monoclonal anibodies (mAbs) against guinea-pig CD1 proteins and generated transfected cell lines expressing individual members of the guinea-pig CD1 family. Our results indicated that multiple members of the guinea-pig CD1 family, including members that are homologous to the human CD1b and CD1c proteins, are expressed at the protein level in transfected cells and in specialized antigen-presenting cells such as monocyte-derived dendritic cells. In addition, CD1 proteins, especially guinea-pig CD1b3, were expressed on a large number of B cells in the guinea-pig, and CD1 expression appeared to be regulated by B-cell maturation or differentiation. Interestingly, three different patterns of intracellular localization were observed for the various guinea-pig CD1 isoforms, a finding that is reminiscent of the distinct patterns of intracellular localization that have been previously demonstrated for human CD1a, CD1b and CD1c. Taken together, these results provide further evidence for substantial similarities between the guinea-pig and human CD1 systems, thus supporting the possibility that the guinea-pig may offer significant advantages as an animal model for the study of the in vivo role of CD1 proteins in infectious and autoimmune diseases.