We have examined 17 primary undifferentiated nasopharyngeal carcinoma biopsies for allelic loss on 3p, comparing the findings in tumors with those in normal lymphocyte DNA from the same patients. Ten polymorphic microsatellite markers were used between 3p13 and 3p26. Allelic loss was observed in 12 samples (70%). Two loci were most frequently affected: D3S1067 (3p21.1-14.3) in 60% and D3S1217 (3p14.2-14.1) in 58%. One tumor seemed to have a homozygous deletion at 3p26, detected by the D3S1297 marker. Analysis of the clinical data showed that an increased number of aberrations in 3p was correlated with more advanced tumor stages.