We analyzed the amount of polyamines in a variety of cyanobacteria including nitrogen-fixing and nonfixing species. All the cyanobacteria capable of fixing nitrogen, contained sym-homospermidine as the major polyamine. The concentration of putrescine, spermidine and spermine was extremely low in these cyanobacteria. The cyanobacteria which normally fail to fix nitrogen contained spermidine as the major polyamine, while the sym-homospermidine content was very low or under the limits of detection. Apparently there is a close relationship between the sym-homospermidine content and the ability to fix nitrogen in cyanobacteria.