An enzyme that catalyzes a post-transcriptional modification of tRNA, resulting in replacement of a base from tRNA by guanine, has been purified 2600-fold from rabbit erythrocyte cytosol. The purest preparation migrates as a single protein band on polycrylamide gel electrophoresis and the enzymatic activity co-electrophoreses with this protein. The native enzyme has a molecular weight of 104,000 and is dissociated into two subunits of Mr= 60,000 and 43,000. The Km for guanine is 1.5 x 10(-7) M and for a pure guanine-accepting tRNA is 3.3 x 10(-9) M. The amino acid composition of the pure enzyme has been determined. To our knowledge this is the first study in which the molecular characteristics of a pure enzyme capable of modifying an internal position in tRNA has been reported.