The proto-oncogene int-2 has been implicated in the formation of mouse mammary-tumour-virus-induced mammary tumours. Analysis of the predicted coding sequence indicates that int-2 is a member of the fibroblast growth factor family. Previous studies using Northern blot analysis suggested that normal expression of int-2 may be confined to extra-embryonic endoderm lineages of embryonic stages of mouse development. We have used in situ hybridization and Northern blot analysis to examine directly int-2 expression in embryo stem cells and in the developing embryo from early gastrulation to midsomite stages. Complex patterns of accumulation of int-2 RNA were observed in embryonic and extra-embryonic tissues. The data suggest multiple roles for int-2 in development which may include migration of early mesoderm cells and induction of the otocyst.