Despite the importance of peritubular myoid (PM) cells in the histogenesis of the fetal testis, understanding the origin and function of these cells has been hampered by the lack of suitable markers. The current study was aimed at identifying molecular markers for PM cells during the early stages of testis development in the mouse embryo. Expression of candidate marker genes was tested by section in situ hybridisation, in some instances followed by immunofluorescent detection of protein products. Collagen type-I, inhibinbetaA, caldesmon 1 and tropomyosin 1 were found to be expressed by early-stage PM cells. These markers were also expressed in subsets of interstitial cells, most likely reflecting their common embryological provenance from migrating mesonephric cells. Although not strictly specific for PM cells, these markers are likely to be useful in studying the biology of early PM cells in the fetal testis.