The interaction between acridine orange (AO) and diluted and concentrated solutions of DNA, DNP systems and chromatin suspension at the physiologic ionic strength was investigated. The effect of AO on DNP systems was also investigated. It was shown that highest possible number of AO molecules bound to DNA made up 70% of the total number of nucleotides. The model of AO binding to DNA is proposed and used for calculation of constants of stronger and weaker AO-binding capacities equal to 6-10(6) M-1 and 1,7-10(5) M-1, respectively. The AO-DNA binding constants in DNP-complex are five as low. The primary number of binding sites in chromatin suspension made up 10% of the corresponding sites in DNA and increased as AO was adsorbed. AO induced the supercontraction of oriented DNP systems at the physiologic ionic strength and the appearance of the low-temperature melting hump.