The cloned bovine prothrombin gene has been characterized by partial DNA sequence analysis, including the 5' and 3' flanking sequences and all the intron-exon junctions. The gene is approximately 15.4 x 10(3) base-pairs in length and comprises 14 exons interrupted by 13 introns. The exons coding for the prepro-leader peptide and the gamma-carboxyglutamic acid-containing region are similar in organization to the corresponding exons in the factor IX and protein C genes. This region has probably evolved as a result of recent gene duplication and exon shuffling events. The exons coding for the kringles and the serine protease region of the prothrombin gene are different in organization from the homologous regions in other genes, suggesting that introns have been inserted into these regions after the initial gene duplication events.