The glomeruli of mice transgenic for bovine growth hormone (GH mice) were disproportionately enlarged as a function of either kidney or body weight. Glomerular size correlated with mesangial sclerosis and the urine albumin/creatinine ratio. The glomerular lesions consisted of mesangial proliferation (4 to 5 weeks) followed by progressive mesangial sclerosis (19 weeks), resulting in complete glomerulosclerosis at 30 to 37 weeks. Albuminuria paralleled the glomerulosclerosis. In contrast, mice transgenic for insulinlike growth factor-I (IGF-I mice) did not develop glomerulosclerosis, even though glomerular size significantly increased. Glomerular hypertrophy, however, did not reach that in GH mice. These data suggest that high levels of circulating GH lead to a disproportionate increase in glomerular cellularity and volume, as well as glomerulosclerosis. This does not appear to be the result of high levels of circulating IGF-I stimulated by GH, as the serum IGF-I level in GH mice was lower than that in IGF-I mice.