Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) from the live vaccine strain of Francisella tularensis (F. tularensis LVS) was isolated and purified. The LPS did not stimulate lymphocytes from previously tularaemia-vaccinated individuals or lymphocytes from non-primed individuals. However, serum antibodies from tularaemia vaccinees reacted with the LPS whereas virtually no reactivity was found with antibodies from individuals not exposed to F. tularensis LVS. Antibodies of immunoglobulin class M displayed the antibody reactivity predominantly. The LPS failed to induce the mononuclear cell-derived cytokine interleukin-1 and only low levels of tumour necrosis factor were detected. Furthermore, no LPS endotoxin properties were found in galactosamine-treated mice or in the Limulus amoebocyte lysate assay. From these results it can be concluded that F. tularensis LVS possesses a lipopolysaccharide-like molecule, which does not exhibit properties of a classical endotoxin.