In the search for immunoreagents appropriate for the histopathologic diagnosis of malignant B-cell lymphomas in routinely processed paraffin sections, a new monoclonal antibody, Ki-B5, was generated using a high- grade B-cell lymphoma as the immunogene. Ki-B5 is a mouse IgG1/kappa that recognizes five protein fractions of about 84, 82, 55, 48, and 27 Kd after biosynthetic radiolabeling and immunoprecipitation. Protein fractions with the molecular weights of approximately 84 and 82 Kd were expressed on the cell surface and show that Ki-B5 is probably unrelated to CD45. It was possible through electron microscopy to visualize the membrane-bound portion of Ki-B5. Extensive immunohistologic studies on normal human tissue and various neoplasias demonstrated the high specificity of Ki-B5 to normal human B cells and a minor subgroup of plasma cells. Except for ML-2, which is a myelomonocytic human cell line, Ki-B5 exclusively recognized the B-cell lineage, including EB-3, BALL-1, and NALM-1. All carcinomas, sarcomas, and malignant melanomas tested with Ki-B5 were negative. Although normal granulocytes and monocytes were constantly negative, three of eight myelomonocytic leukemias coreacted with this antibody. Eight of the 57 T-cell lymphomas studied were positive to Ki-B5. Five were classified as lymphoblastic, two represented T8-CLL, and one was classified as immunoblastic T-cell lymphoma. Only 3 of 126 cases of B-cell lymphoma, including rare types not considered in the current classifications, were negative to Ki-B5. Plasmacytomas were also negative, except for one case. Irrespective of the cases of lymphoblastic lymphoma and plasmacytoma, Ki-B5 represents a new monoclonal antibody appropriate for the diagnosis and immunophenotyping of malignant lymphomas in routinely processed paraffin sections.