Molecular typing of HLA class II loci has been performed on a sample of 196 patients with Hodgkin lymphoma. Division of patients into two histological categories--nodular sclerosing Hodgkin disease versus all other types--shows significant overall association of the nodular sclerosing group with the HLA class II region. Haplotypes and alleles defined for the four loci typed--DRB1, DQA1, DQB1, and DPB1--were present in both excess and deficit in the nodular sclerosing sample. Some of the effects are attributable to particular DRB1 and DQB1 alleles, while other effects are best explained by haplotypes marking the entire class II region. The latter effects might be due to variation in additional, as-yet-unexamined loci in the class II region or to particular combinations of alleles from two or more loci. These data also explain why earlier studies showed HLA linkage but not association, and they substantiate the specific involvement of the immune system in certain neoplastic diseases.