In this study we present the characterization of the temperature-sensitive mutant allele cdc9-1 encoding DNA ligase, of Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain A364A by DNA sequencing. Comparison with the published wild-type sequence from strain SK1 revealed 13 nucleotide exchanges between these two sequences, which are derived from non-isogenic genetic backgrounds. Only four of these changes, distributed over the whole coding region, lead to amino acid exchanges in the protein chain. Our analysis of the sequence of the wild-type CDC9 allele from strain A364A revealed differences from the isogenic cdc9-1 allele in only two nucleotides: one silent change and one leading to a single amino acid exchange. The latter is therefore responsible for the temperature-sensitive phenotype. A mosaic protein, in which a region carrying this amino acid exchange has been inserted in place of the corresponding part of CDC9 from the non-isogenic strain SK1, is not temperature sensitive. The exchange of a longer stretch of DNA leading to atteration of three amino acids of the protein compared with the original sequence of SK1 is required to obtain a temperature-sensitive DNA ligase in this strain, while in strain A364A a single amino acid change is sufficient for expression of a temperature-sensitive protein.