Recent studies have shown an orderly sequence of expression of structural antigens within the skin basement-membrane zone of the human fetus. Interestingly, these findings differ from those reported following split-thickness would induction in Yorkshire pigs. To readdress this apparent disparity, as well as to further extend such studies to include other basement-membrane antigens more recently identified, we produced split-thickness wounds in a primate species and serially examined the wounds by immunofluorescence technique for the expression of seven antigens normally found in intact primate skin basement membrane. By the fourth day following wounding, laminin, type-IV collagen, and fibronectin were all detectable along the dermoepidermal junction. In contrast, bullous pemphigoid antigen, epidermolysis bullosa acquisita antigen, cicatricial pemphigoid antigen, and KF-1 antigen were undetectable until days 6, 8, 10, and 11, respectively. These latter findings are in complete agreement with those previously reported in the developing human fetus. On the basis of the results of this study, we would suggest that primate rather than pig skin may be a more appropriate animal model for wound-healing studies. These data are consistent with previous reports suggesting that the basement-membrane antigens recognized by bullous pemphigoid and cicatricial pemphigold autoantibodies are indeed distinct. Finally, these data bring into question the functional role of bullous pemphigoid antigen during the early phase of wound healing in humans.