A 5000-rad whole-genome radiation hybrid cell panel (BW5000) was developed for mapping the deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus bairdii) genome. The panel consists of 103 cell lines and has an estimated marker retention frequency of 63.9% (range, 28%-88%) based on PCR typing of 30 Type I (coding gene) and 25 Type II (microsatellite) markers. Using the composite Mus map, Type I markers were selected from six Mus chromosomes, 22 of which are on Mus Chr 11. Fifteen of the Mus Chr 11 markers were simultaneously mapped on an interspecific (P. maniculatus x P. polionotus) backcross panel to test the utility of the radiation hybrid panel, create a framework map, and help establish gene order. The radiation hybrids have effectively detected linkage in the deer mouse genome between markers as far apart as 6.7 cM and resolved markers that are, in the Mus genome, as close as 0.2 Mb. Combined results from both panels have indicated a high degree of gene order conservation of the telomeric 64 cM of Mus Chr 11 in the deer mouse genome. The remaining centromeric portion also shows gene order conservation with the deer mouse but as a separate linkage group. This indicates a translocation of that portion of Mus Chr 11 in P. maniculatus and is consistent with rearrangement breakpoints observed between Mus and other mammalian genomes, including rat and human. Furthermore, this separate linkage group is likely to reside in a chromosomal region of inversion polymorphism between P. maniculatus and P. polionotus.