Human skin fibroblasts from embryo, 16-, 30- and 60-year-old adults were cultivated and passaged in vitro. Their chromatin structures were examined by the sensitivity to micrococcal nuclease and by electron microscopy. When the mode of DNA degradation by the nuclease was analysed during in vitro aging of the embryo skin fibroblasts, the discrete ladder of nucleosomal DNA became obscure in old cells. Analogous change of chromatin structure was also observed even in young cells as their donor ages increased. From the observation with electron microscopy, it became clear that chromatin of fibroblasts from 30-year-old adults does not have regularly spaced nucleosomes, compared with chromatin from embryo. These results suggest that the length of the linker DNA which connects core particles becomes to be heterogeneous by aging, both in vivo and in vitro in human skin fibroblasts.