A gene encoding a novel transmembrane protein was identified by DNA sequence analysis within the insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) locus IDDM4 on chromosome 11q13. Based on its chromosomal position, this gene is a candidate for conferring susceptibility to diabetes. The gene, termed low-density lipoprotein receptor related protein 5 (LRP5), encodes a protein of 1615 amino acids that contains conserved modules which are characteristic of the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor family. These modules include a putative signal peptide for protein export, four epidermal growth factor (EGF) repeats with associated spacer domains, three LDL-receptor (LDLR) repeats, a single transmembrane spanning domain, and a cytoplasmic domain. The encoded protein has a unique organization of EGF and LDLR repeats; therefore, LRP5 likely represents a new category of the LDLR family. Both human and mouse LRP5 cDNAs have been isolated and the encoded mature proteins are 95% identical, indicating a high degree of evolutionary conservation.