The short tandem repeat (STR) polymorphism present within the 5' untranslated region of the human coagulation factor XIII A subunit gene, HUMF13A01[AAAG]n, was evaluated using an allelic ladder, i.e., a standard size marker consisting of amplified alleles from the locus. The allelic ladder was constructed by pooling 12 polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-amplified alleles identified by their differential migration in denaturing polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. This standard marker was used to distinguish 14 different alleles observed at this locus. Sequence analyses indicate that 13 of the alleles contain 4 through 16 iterations of the tandemly repeated AAAG sequence, respectively. The remaining allele carries four repeats and displays a deletion of two consecutive nucleotides (GT), one base distal to the repeat region. The allelic ladder was employed to type 326 F13A01 chromosomes rapidly and reliably in representatives of a German Caucasian population. Population data were analyzed with respect to Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium (HWE) and compared with those of a previously studied Houston, Texas, Caucasian population.