Allozyme, random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), and microsatellite polymorphisms were examined and compared among five native populations of Chinese chickens, two fast-growing broiler lines, and one layer line. Three assay systems resulted in a different average heterozygosity or gene diversity in each of the eight populations. The lowest average heterozygosity was obtained with allozyme analysis (0.2209), intermediate heterozygosity was obtained with RAPD (0.2632), and the highest heterozygosity was observed with microsatellite analysis (0.7591). The genetic distances among all populations measured by three methods were also different. Allozyme data showed close relationships between Chinese native chickens and the two broiler lines, but they were both remotely related to the layer line. Microsatellite polymorphism analysis was similar to the allozyme analysis but genetic distances from RAPD showed a close relationship between Chinese native chickens and broiler and layer chickens.