There is evidence that platelet derived growth factor (PDGF) is a mediator of proliferative changes in renal arteries and mesangium in human disease, in the mesangium in experimental mesangial proliferative glomerulonephritis, and in the interstitium in a rodent model of angiotensin II mediated hypertension. We utilized a monoclonal antibody to the beta-subunit of the PDGF-receptor to localize constitutive expression of this receptor in human and nonhuman primate tissues. Tissues were fixed in cold 2 or 4% paraformaldehyde, and immunohistochemical techniques both at the light microscopic level and immunoelectron microscopy were employed. In the glomerulus, there is widespread expression of this molecule by mesangial cells, and there is frequent expression on the apical and lateral surface of parietal epithelial cells. There is also widespread expression of this molecule by cortical and medullary peritubular interstitial cells, but not by glomerular or peritubular capillary endothelium or other renal parenchymal structures. The identification of receptors capable of binding PDGF B-chain at each of these sites: (1) provides a basis for PDGF mediated mesangial proliferation in human disease; (2) provides a basis for PDGF mediated interstitial cell migration and/or proliferation and/or activation at sites of tubulointerstitial injury; and (3) suggests that glomerular parietal epithelial cells may be responsive to stimulation by PDGF.