A strain of Pseudomonas putida that can utilize naphthalene as its sole source of carbon and energy was isolated from soil. A mutant strain of this organism, P. putida 119, when grown on glucose in the presence of naphthalene, accumulates optically pure (+)-cis-1(R),2(S)-dihydroxy-1,2-dihydronaphthalene in the culture medium. The cis relative stereochemistry in this molecule was established by nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometry. Radiochemical trapping experiments established that this cis dihydrodiol is an intermediate in the metabolism of naphthalene by P. Fluorescens (formerly ATCC, 17483), P. putida (ATCC, 17484), and a Pseudomonas species (NCIB 9816), as well as the parent strain of P. putida described in this report. Formation of the cis dihydrodiol is catalyzed by a dioxygenase which requires either NADH or NADPH as an electron donor. A double label procedure is described for determining the origin of oxygen in the cis dihydrodiol under conditions where this metabolite would not normally accumulate. Several aromatic hydrocarbons are oxidized by cell extracts prepared from naphthalene-grown cells of P. putida. The cis dihydrodiol is converted to 1,2-dihydroxynaphthalene by an NAD+-dependent dehydrogenase. This enzyme is specific for the (+) isomer of the dihydrodiol and shows a primary isotope effect when the dihydrodiol is substituted at C-2 with deuterium.