El Tor strains of Vibrio cholerae are capable of producing a haemolysin which they actively secrete into the growth medium. This requires translation to produce the protein at the surface of the cytoplasmic membrane and translocation across this membrane, the periplasmic space and the outer membrane. The mechanism by which this occurs is poorly understood. In addition to the structural gene for the haemolysin (hlyA), we have cloned a second adjacent gene, hlyB. By site-directed mutagenesis, specific hlyB mutants have been constructed. These mutants are defective in the secretion of HlyA in the early to mid-exponential phase of growth and the haemolysin becomes trapped within the cell and is only released in stationary phase. Nucleotide sequence analysis and cell fractionations reveal HlyB to be a 60.3 kD putative outer membrane-associated protein.