The unknown modified nucleoside U* has been isolated by enzymatic and HPLC protocols from tRNA(Leu) (U*AA) recently discovered in brewer's yeast. The pure U* nucleoside has been characterized by electron impact mass spectroscopy, and comparison of its chromatographic and UV-absorption properties with those of appropriate synthetic compounds. The structure of U* was established as 2'-O-methyl-5-carbamoylmethyluridine (ncm5Um). The yeast tRNA(Leu) (U*AA) is the only tRNA so far sequenced which has been shown to contain ncm5Um. The location of such a modified uridine at the first position of the anticodon restricts the decoding property to A of the leucine UUA codon.