Lysis of target cells by natural killer (NK) cells can be prevented by killer cell inhibitory receptors (KIR) specific for major histocompatibility complex class I molecules. Functional studies have identified two distinct p58 KIR, each reactive with a different group of HLA-C allotypes, and distinct p70 KIR specific for some HLA-B or HLA-A allotypes. The NK specificities for each group of HLA-C allotypes have been reproduced by direct binding of recombinant soluble p58 molecules. Here, we show that a soluble p70 KIR binds to HLA-B*5101, but not to HLA-A or HLA-C molecules. Truncated soluble forms of the HLA-B*5101-specific p70 KIR, including one with two immunoglobulin (Ig) domains reactive with a monoclonal antibody that blocks p70 KIR function, did not bind to HLA-B*5101, indicating that all three Ig domains are required for binding.