A novel human nm23/nucleoside diphosphate (NDP) kinase gene, called nm23-H4, was identified by screening a human stomach cDNA library with a probe generated by amplification by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. The primers were designed from publicly available database cDNA sequences selected according to their homology to the human nn23-H1 putative metastasis suppressor gene. The full-length cDNA sequence predicts a 187 amino acid protein possessing the region homologous to NDP kinases with all residues crucial for nucleotide binding and catalysis, strongly suggesting that Nm23-H4 possesses NDP kinase activity. It shares 56, 55 and 60% identity with Nm23-H1, Nm23-H2 and DR-Nm23, respectively, the other human Nm23 proteins isolated so far. Compared with these proteins, Nm23-H4 contains an additional NH2-terminal region that is rich in positively charged residues and could indicate routing to mitochondria. The nm23-H4 gene has been localised to human chromosomal band 16p13.3. The corresponding 1.2 kb mRNA is widely distributed and expressed in a tissue-dependent manner, being found at very high levels in prostate, heart, liver, small intestine and skeletal muscle tissues and in low amounts in the brain and in blood leucocytes. Nm23-H4 naturally possesses the Pro-Ser substitution equivalent to the K-pn mutation (P97S) of Drosophila.