Superficial bladder cancer shows a high frequency of total or partial chromosome 9 losses. Loss of heterozygosity at position 9q22.3 is one of the most frequent and is associated with highly recurrent tumours. The PATCHED gene, ortholog of a gene first described in the drosophila as a segment polarity gene, is located at 9q22.3. It is a member of a signal transduction pathway and a tumour suppressor gene (TSG), involved in basal cell carcinoma. We propose PATCHED as a TSG candidate in superficial bladder cancer.