Ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T) is a progressive neurologic disorder in which there is varied immune dysfunction, an excess sensitivity to ionizing radiation, and a striking predisposition to cancer. It is the autosomal recessive syndrome for which there is the strongest evidence, derived from retrospective studies of cancer incidence and mortality in A-T families, that the heterozygote is predisposed to cancer. We present, in tabular form, the specific cancer sites or types most likely to be associated with A-T heterozygosity. These include solid tumors of the breast, pancreas, stomach, bladder, and ovary, and chronic lymphocytic leukemia. We also introduce a new method to test these associations. As soon as molecular probes for the A-T allele(s) are available, this new research design will be used to test rigorously each association, hypothesized on the basis of previous data, between a specific cancer site and A-T heterozygosity.