A full-length cDNA encoding a novel ribosomal protein L3 gene was isolated and sequenced. The deduced protein sequence is 407 amino acids long and shows 77% identity to other known mammalian ribosomal protein L3 genes, which are themselves highly conserved. Southern blot analysis of human genomic DNA suggests that this novel gene is single copy. While the previously identified human ribosomal protein L3 gene has ubiquitous expression in all tissues surveyed, the novel gene described herein is strongly expressed in skeletal muscle and heart tissue, with low levels of expression in the pancreas. This novel gene, RPL3L, is located in a gene-rich region near the PKD1 and TSC2 genes on chromosome 16p13.3.