Complementary DNA clones for the regulatory subunit RI beta of cAMP-dependent protein kinases were isolated from a human testis cDNA library using a mouse RI beta cDNA probe. One clone 2.4 kilobases (kb) in length contained an open reading frame of 1137 bases, and encoded a protein of 379 amino acids (excluding the initiator methionine). The human RI beta protein was one amino acid shorter than the corresponding protein in mouse and rat. The nucleotide similarity to mouse and rat sequences was 85.6% and 84.8%, respectively, while the amino acid similarity was 97.6% and 97.3%, respectively. Northern blot analyses revealed a 2.7 kb mRNA in human tissues and a 2.8 kb mRNA in mouse tissues. Both mouse and human RI beta mRNA were found to be expressed in most tissues, and not restricted to brain and testis as reported by others.