The present multicentre clinical study was conducted to assess the clinical utility of a new diagnostic method for deep mycosis in which (1-->3)-beta-D-glucan, a fungal cell wall component existing in plasma, was quantitatively measured by the kinetic turbidimetric Limulus test (WB003). Plasma (1-->3)-beta-D-glucan concentrations were 0.57 +/- 0.10 microgram/l in 92 healthy subjects and 0.62 +/- 0.32 microgram/l in 26 patients with non-mycotic diseases (disease control group). In comparison with these healthy subjects and patients with non-mycotic diseases, patients with mycosis had significantly higher plasma (1-->3)-beta-D-glucan concentrations: 19.63 +/- 73.28 micrograms/l in 12 patients with candidaemia, 11.28 +/- 21.42 micrograms/l in 7 patients with urinary Candida infection, 4.84 +/- 12.71 micrograms/l in 5 patients with pulmonary candidiasis, and 12.21 +/- 31.31 micrograms/l in 4 patients with invasive pulmonary aspergillosis. On the statistical analysis of these data, a cut-off value was set at 1.0 microgram/l. Using this cut-off value, 3 patients with pulmonary cryptococcosis and 4 patients (4/6) with pulmonary aspergilloma were all negative with low plasma (1-->3-beta-D-glucan levels. The test WB003 provided equivalent or higher efficiency of diagnosis of candidiasis and aspergillosis, in comparison with commercially available antigen detection kits, demonstrating its utility as a diagnostic reagent. It may also be useful in assessing therapeutic effectiveness when used periodically after treatment.