Focal gamma irradiation was used to limit the intraocular extension of scar tissue which typically occurs after posterior perforating injury to the eye. Standard posterior perforating injuries were created in the right eye of forty-eight rabbits, half of which had the site of perforation focally irradiated using a Cobalt 60 ophthalmic plaque. Non-irradiated wounds healed with profuse formation of highly cellular and vascularised granulation tissue which invaded the vitreous to form contractile vitreo-retinal membranes. In irradiated eyes vitreo-retinal membrane formation was infrequent; the wounds showing only sparse granulation tissue with little or no extension into the vitreous cavity. Autoradiographic studies carried out in a second group of 40 animals showed that the episclera was the main source of the proliferating fibroblasts, and cell counts confirmed that the inflammatory and repair responses in irradiated wounds were both delayed and attenuated.