Extensive heterogeneity of tracheobronchial mucin RNAs has been described recently. Based on the results of total or partial cDNA sequencing, the mucin cDNAs obtained were classified into three groups. The first group contained 24 bp tandem repeat sequences, the second exhibited homology at their amino- and carboxyl-terminals, and the third group seems to consist of alternative hydrophilic-hydrophobic zones. JER58, JER47 and JER57 probes, representing the first, second, and third tracheobronchial mucin families respectively, were used for chromosome assignment. In human DNAs digested with BamHI, the JER58 probe detected a sequence of 21 kb, the JER47 probe detected a major sequence of 21 kb and a minor sequence of 4 kb, and the JER57 probe detected two sequences of 1.8 kb and 1.3 kb. By somatic hybrid cell analysis, the JER58. JER47, and JER57 major sequences were assigned to chromosome 11 and the JER47 minor sequence to chromosome 13. By in situ hybridization the JER58, JER47 and JER57 probes were assigned to 11p15. Under the experimental conditions used, no specific hybridization to the chromosome 13 region was observed with the JER47 probe. Our results indicate that tracheobronchial mucin gene(s) is/are localized on 11p15. The minor JER47 BamHI sequence localized on chromosome 13 probably corresponds to a tracheal-mucin related sequence. The intestinal mucin gene was also recently localized to the same 11p15 region. Intestinal and tracheobronchial mucins appear different according to their tissue distribution and their cDNA nucleotide sequences. Tracheal mucin probes (JER58, JER47, JER57) and intestinal probes may represent independent genes on 11p15 or else different mRNAs from the same primary transcript produced by differential splicing. Further studies using mucin genomic probes for 11p15 will be required for the elucidation of tracheal and intestinal mucin gene organisation in this region.