UV treatment increases the frequency of Tn10 precise excision from different sites of the Escherichia coli chromosome. UV induction of Tn10 excision is not evidenced in a lexA3 (ind-) mutant carrying either a recA+ or a recA730 allele. High levels of RecA synthesized by a recA+ gene not repressible by LexA do not relieve the non-inducibility of Tn10 excision in a lexA3 (ind-) background. This indicates that the expression of an SOS gene different from recA is necessary for the induction of Tn10 excision. In contrast to UV induction of point mutations, this induction does not depend on a functional umuC gene since umuC::Tn5 mutants show increased levels of Tn10 excision from leu, thr or gal after irradiation. MucAB+ plasmid pKM101 which renders cells more UV-mutable for point mutations decreases UV-induced Tn10 excision. These results show that UV-induced Tn10 precise excision requires SOS induction and that it involves a pathway different from point mutagenesis.