cDNA clones encoding zinc finger structures were isolated by screening Molt4 and Jurkat cDNA libraries with zinc finger consensus sequences. Candidate clones were partially sequenced to verify the presence of zinc finger-encoding regions; nonoverlapping cDNA clones were chosen on the basis of sequences and genomic hybridization pattern. Zinc finger structure-encoding clones, which were designated by the term "Kox" and a number from 1 to 32 and which were apparently unique (i.e., distinct from each other and distinct from those isolated by other laboratories), were chosen for mapping in the human genome. DNAs from rodent-human somatic cell hybrids retaining defined complements of human chromosomes were analyzed for the presence of each of the Kox genes. Correlation between the presence of specific human chromosome regions and specific Kox genes established the chromosomal locations. Multiple Kox loci were mapped to 7q (Kox 18 and 25 and a locus detected by both Kox 8 cDNA and Kox 27 cDNA), 8q24 5' to the myc locus (Kox 9 and 32), 10cen----q24 (Kox 2, 15, 19, 21, 30, and 31), 12q13-qter (Kox 1 and 20), 17p13 (Kox 11 and 26), and 19q (Kox 5, 6, 10, 22, 24, and 28). Single Kox loci were mapped to 7p22 (Kox 3), 18q12 (Kox 17), 19p (Kox 13), 22q11 between IG lambda and BCR-1 (locus detected by both Kox 8 cDNA and Kox 27 cDNA), and Xp (Kox 14). Several of the Kox loci map to regions in which other zinc finger structure-encoding loci have already been localized, indicating possible zinc finger gene clusters. In addition, Kox genes at 8q24, 17p13, and 22q11--and perhaps other Kox genes--are located near recurrent chromosomal translocation breakpoints. Others, such as those on 7p and 7q, may be near regions specifically active in T cells.