Dermatan sulfate (DS) is a member of the glycosaminoglycan (GAG) family and is primarily located in the extracellular matrix. Using a modified phage display procedure, we selected 2 different antibodies against DS of which one antibody, LKN1, was specific for DS. LKN1 was especially reactive with 4/2,4-di-O-sulfated DS, and did not react with other classes of GAGs including chondroitin sulfate and heparan sulfate. Immunohistochemical analysis of kidney, skin and tendon showed a typical fibrillar staining pattern, co-localizing with type I collagen. Staining was abolished by specific enzymatic digestion of DS. Immunoelectron microscopy confirmed the association of the DS epitope with collagen fibrils. The location of DS did not follow the main banding period of collagen, which is in line with the current concept that the core protein rather than the DS moiety of DS-proteoglycans specifically binds to collagen fibrils. This unique anti-DS antibody and the availability of its coding DNA may be instrumental in studies of the structure and function of DS.