A number of proteins with significant similarity to the tumour necrosis factor (TNF) have been identified over the last years. Upon interaction with their cognate receptor (members of the TNF-receptor family), all members of this protein family induce either cell death or proliferation/differentiation of the receptor-bearing cells. One of the last identified members of the TNF family is the apoptosis-inducing ligand of the Fas-receptor, termed Fas-ligand (FasL). Here we report the cloning and sequencing of the mouse cDNA for the FasL. Using knowledge-based protein modelling, we demonstrate that all members of the TNF family form trimeric complexes, and define the residues located at the subunit interfaces. The resulting structurally corrected multiple sequence alignment allows the identification of residues potentially involved in receptor recognition, and should help design mutagenesis experiments for structure-function relationship studies.