A nation-wide sero-epidemiologic survey of adult T-cell leukemia virus (ATLV), detected es anti-ATLA (ATLV-associated antigen), was made in Japan. Sera from adult donors in 15 different locations were screened for anti-ATLA. High incidences (6 to 37%) of antibody-positive donors were found in seven regions, one in northern Japan, and the others in southwestern regions. These areas are ATLV-endemic areas corresponding to ATL-endemic areas. Examination of sera from healthy donors aged 6 to 80 years in ATL-endemic areas showed an age-dependent increase of seropositive donors with a maximum of about 30% at 40 years of age. Anti-ATLA was found in all but two of 142 patients with ATL. Anti-ATLA-positive patients with ATL were mainly found in ATLV-endemic areas, and only a few in ATL-nonendemic areas. Six patients with cutaneous T-cell lymphoma in ATLV-nonendemic areas gave a negative reaction for anti-ATLA. The geometric mean titer of anti-ATLA of patients with ATL was higher than that of healthy donors.