The analysis of the electrophoretic chromosome patterns of the species of the genus Kluyveromyces, reveals a high polymorphism in size, number and intensity of bands. Different sets of electrophoresis running conditions were used to establish species-specific patterns and also to detect intraspecific variation. According to their karyotypes, the species of this genus can be divided into two major groups. The first group includes the species K. africanus, K. bacillisporus, K. delphensis, K. lodderae, K. phaffi, K. polysporus and K. yarrowii, composing the so-called 'Saccharomyces cerevisiae-like' group, because their karyotypes resemble that of the species S. cerevisiae. The second group comprises the species K. aestuarii, K. blattae, K. dobzhanskii, K. lactis, K. marxianus, K. thermotolerans, K. waltii and K. wickerhamii, whose chromosomal patterns exhibit common characteristics very different to those of the species included in the 'S. cerevisiae-like' group. This division is concordant with the position of these species in previous phylogenetic reconstructions. Additionally, the intraspecific analysis of the chromosome patterns show a rich polymorphism in the heterogeneous species K. dobzhanskii, K. lactis, and K. marxianus, which is in concordance with the variability observed with other phenotypic or genetic markers. On the contrary, K. thermotolerans exhibits a homogeneous karyotype indicative of a very low level of chromosomal polymorphism, which is congruent with the reduced variability found in this species with other molecular markers.