Immunoreactivity with HMB-45 has recently been described in renal angiomyolipoma, a tumour of smooth muscle cells. HMB-45 is a monoclonal antibody that reacts specifically with melanosomes. In order to determine whether the tumour cells contain melanosomes and synthesize melanin, seven tumours were studied by light microscopy and immunohistochemically with the antibodies HMB-45, KP1 (CD68), PG-M1 (CD68), Ki-M1P, anti-lysozyme, anti-smooth-muscle actin, anti-vimentin, anti-S100 protein and KL1 (anti-keratin). Two tumours were also studied by electronmicroscopy and one by immuno-electronmicroscopy. Histochemical investigation for dopa oxidase was performed on cryostat sections. The tumours contained varying numbers of HMB-45-positive muscle cells. Reactivity was noted in lysosomal granules and rough endoplasmic reticulum. Typical premelanosomes were found in the tumour cells by electronmicroscopy. Groups of tumour cells stained for dopa oxidase. The tumour cells were not reactive for lysozyme, but reacted with KP1, PG-M1 and Ki-M1P. Immuno-electronmicroscopy showed that reactivity for KP1 was located within lysosomal granules. The findings show that the tumour cells of renal angiomyolipoma contain premelanosomes and that they are able to synthesize melanin, because they contain dopa oxidase. Immunoreactivity with KP1, PG-M1 and Ki-M1P can be attributed, in the absence of staining for lysozyme, to the large number of lysosomal granules. The tumour cells were not found to be related to macrophages or myeloid cells.