1. Specific radioimmunoassays for the prostaglandins E2, A2 and F2alpha were used to study the synthesis of prostaglandins by gastroscopically obtained small biopsy specimens of human gastric corpus mucosa. 2. Both prostaglandin E2 and prostaglandin F2alpha were found to be synthesized from arachidonic acid by themicrosomal fraction of human gastric mucosa. The synthesis of prostaglandin E2 exceeded that of prostagladin F2alpha by a factor of about 10. 3. Synthesis of prostaglandin A2 or prostaglandin B2 was not observed under the same incubation conditions. 4. Indometacin effectively inhibited synthesis of both prostaglandin E2 (ID50 4.2 microng/ml) and prostaglandin F2alpha (ID50 1.8 microng/ml) by human gastric mucosa, while paracetamol even in a concentration of 310 microng/ml did not influence prostaglandin synthesis. The anti-ulcer agent carbenoxolone, which has been shown to inhibit prostaglandin inactivation, at the same concentration only slightly inhibited (about 20%) prostaglandin synthesis. 5. The results support the hypothesis that the gastro-intestinal effects or side effects of several drugs are mediated by an influence on the enzymes of prostaglandin synthesis or inactivation.