The 3F3/2 antibody recognizes a phosphoepitope that is implicated in the mitotic checkpoint regulating the metaphase-to-anaphase transition. Immunoprecipitation and Western blotting revealed that the 3F3/2 antibody binds to human DNA topoisomerase II alpha (HsTIIalpha) from mitotic but not interphase HeLa cells. Extracts from mitotic cells efficiently catalyzed the formation of the 3F3/2 phosphoepitope on fragments of HsTIIalpha expressed in bacteria. Expression and site-directed mutagenesis of various HsTIIalpha protein fragments mapped the 3F3/2 phosphoepitope to the region of HsTIIalpha containing phosphorylated threonine 1342. This threonine lies within a consensus sequence for phosphorylation by casein kinase II (CKII). CKII is present in cellular extracts and is associated with isolated mitotic chromosomes. The 3F3/2 phosphoepitope kinase present in mitotic cell extracts was able to create the epitope using GTP and was inhibited by heparin. A kinase associated with the isolated chromosomes also generated the 3F3/2 phosphoepitope on HsTIIalpha. Recombinant CKII catalyzed the formation of the 3F3/2 phosphoepitope on fragments of HsTIIalpha containing threonine 1342. These results indicate that the mitotic 3F3/2 phosphoepitope kinase activity is attributable to CKII. We suggest that the 3F3/2 phosphoepitope reflects a CKII-catalyzed phosphorylation of threonine 1342 that may regulate mitotic functions of HsTIIalpha.