Tumor induction in rats by 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) will generate malignancies that display reproducible chromosomal abnormalities involving rat chromosome (RNO) 2. Thus, it has been reported that rat DMBA erythroleukemias display RNO2 abnormalities, which in this case were closely correlated to mutations in the Nras oncogene located in RNO2q34. Our cytogenetic analysis in a series of 17 DMBA-induced rat sarcomas showed that 11 (65%) tumors had a significant increase in RNO2 copy number. Furthermore, the incidence of point mutations in codons 12, 13 and 61 of Hras, Kras, and Nras was examined in the same set of sarcomas, and mutations were detected in three (18%) tumors, in codon 61 of Kras (CAA-->CAT) (1 of 17) and Nras (CAA-->CTA) (2 of 17). We conclude that the high frequency of RNO2 gain was in accordance with previous studies of DMBA-induced rat neoplasms, supporting the idea of a significant role of RNO2 in DMBA carcinogenesis. However, there was no clear-cut relationship between activated Nras and gain of RNO2 material, implying that mutational activation of Nras is not the causative factor underlying the gain of RNO2 copy number in rat DMBA sarcomas, in contrast to what has been suggested for DMBA-induced erythroleukemias.