Proteins translated in vitro from Schistosoma mansoni adult worm mRNA were assessed for their antigenic specificities compared to different stages, strains and species of the parasite. RNA was extracted from both Puerto Rican and Brazilian parasites and directed the synthesis of high molecular weight proteins. Preabsorption of immune human serum with schistosomula was used to determine whether the in vitro translated proteins contained antigens shared between the adult and this immature stage. Three antigens (Mr 36,000, 29,000, 18,000) were observed to be present in both stages. When adult worm mRNA from 2 different geographic strains of S. mansoni (Puerto Rican and Brazilian) were compared, certain antigenic differences were found in their in vitro translation products (proteins at Mr 78,000, 26,000, 24,000, 22,000, 15,500), suggesting that different antigenic pools may exist in nature. The species specificity of the in vitro proteins was assessed using individual sera from humans whose species of schistosome infection and egg counts were known. Immunoprecipitation with these sera demonstrated that a large number of immunologically cross-reactive proteins were shared between S. mansoni and Schistosoma haematobium but not Schistosoma japonicum. Antigens or antigen complexes at Mr 47,000 and 37,000 were detected only in the immunoprecipitations using anti-S. mansoni sera, whereas an antigen of Mr 39,000 was precipitated only by anti-S. haematobium sera. The recognition of any 1 antigen or group of antigens, however, did not distinguish between intensities of infection.