Prostate cancer shows evidence of familial aggregation, particularly at young ages at diagnosis, but the inherited basis of familial prostate cancer is poorly understood. Smith et al. recently found evidence of linkage to markers on 1q, at a locus designated "HPC1," in 91 families with multiple cases of early-onset prostate cancer. Using both parametric and nonparametric methods, we attempted to confirm this finding, in 60 affected related pairs and in 76 families with three or more cases of prostate cancer, but we found no significant evidence of linkage. The estimated proportion of linked families, under a standard autosomal dominant model, was 4%, with an upper 95% confidence limit of 31%. We conclude that the HPC1 locus is responsible for only a minority of familial prostate cancer cases and that it is likely to be most important in families with at least four cases of the disease.