We have found a new spontaneous autosomal recessive mutation in mice that causes a systemic absence of lymph nodes and Peyer's patches. The name "alymphoplasia", with the gene symbol "aly", is proposed for this mutant. The spleen of aly/aly mice is devoid of well-defined lymphoid follicles, and the thymus does not show a clear cortical-medullary distinction. The mutant homozygotes are deficient in both humoral and cell-mediated immune functions, and are highly susceptible to infections. They have a reduced level of IgM and severely depressed levels of IgG and IgA in their sera, and do not reject allogeneic skin grafts. However, they have mature T and B cells as determined from their cell surface antigens. The results of bone marrow transplantation experiments suggest a mesenchymal disorder as a possible cause of the lack of lymph nodes and of immunodeficiency in the aly mouse. The aly mutant mouse may be a useful animal model of primary immunodeficiency, as are the nu (nude) and scid (severe combined immunodeficiency) mice.