The effects of alpha-difluoromethylornithine (DFMO), radiation and the therapy of their combination were investigated in rats bearing G-XII glioma. DFMO treatment as well as radiation therapy prolonged the survival period when compared to the results in non-treated control rats. The combination therapy showed a greater effect on the survival rate than the single therapies, the effect being additive. The concentration of putrescine, spermidine, and N1-acetylspermidine in tumor tissue was lowered by DFMO, while that of spermine was slightly elevated. Radiation decreased the concentration of all the polyamines, putrescine, spermidine, spermine and N1-acetylspermidine. The concomitant treatment with DFMO and radiation further decreased the concentrations of putrescine and N1-acetylspermidine in tumor tissues. The survival period of glioma-bearing rats is inversely correlated with the tissue levels of putrescine plus N1-acetylspermidine.