The RET proto-oncogene, which encodes a receptor tyrosine kinase, displays multiple alternative splicing variants. Splicing of sequences 3' of exon 19 to generate several coding and untranslated region (UTR) sequences has been previously reported. We have sequenced the full length RET coding region and characterized the transcripts and 3' UTRs generated by alternative splicing of the RET 3' terminus. These analyses were performed using both RET cDNA cloned from a pheochromocytoma library and reverse transcriptase PCR products generated using RNA from a neuroblastoma cell line (LA-N-2). Three different carboxyl termini were identified. In addition to the nine and 51 terminal amino acid forms already known, we identified a third with 43 terminal amino acids predicted to encode a novel RET protein isoform. A total of 3621 base pairs of DNA 3' of exon 19, which spans the alternatively spliced exons and RET UTRs, was sequenced. Four polyadenylation sites were identified. The observed combinations of polyadenylation sites and 3' coding sequence suggest that RET transcripts with up to 10 different 3' sequences and up to 40 different full length RET transcripts may exist.