The type 2 complement receptor, CR2, a B lymphocyte surface glycoprotein, is known to be a component of the EBV receptor. We now demonstrate that the major EBV outer membrane glycoprotein, gp350/220, is a highly specific ligand for CR2. EBV or beads coated with purified recombinant gp350/220 adsorb to normal B lymphocytes, cap with CR2, become endocytosed into vesicles, and are released into the cytoplasm. This is the first demonstration of herpesvirus glycoprotein-cell glycoprotein receptor interaction in viral adsorption and penetration. The capping of CR2 in response to virus, gp350/220-coated beads, or anti-CR2 monoclonal antibodies is associated with cocapping of surface immunoglobulin. Interaction between CR2 and surface immunoglobulin may be important in modulating the B cell activation that normally follows EBV infection or exposure to antigen.