Transmucosal potential difference (PD) and intraluminal pressure were recorded from the same jejunal site in 15 healthy adult controls and 4 adults with cystic fibrosis. In the controls, runs of contractions were associated with wave-like changes in PD with, during phase III-like activity, a mean peak amplitude of -9.7 mV. Although there were no obvious differences in motor patterns, wave-like changes in PD were absent in patients with cystic fibrosis. Intraluminal boluses of 4 mg pilocarpine, or 0.1 mg prostaglandin E2, caused changes of -4.6 mV and -4.5 mV, respectively, in controls; these responses were not seen in patients with cystic fibrosis. There were no significant differences in basal PD and PD changes caused by altered concentrations of infused saline or glucose between patients and controls.