X-ray quality crystals of an Fab fragment from an antipeptide monoclonal antibody (R/V3-50.1) that recognizes the principal neutralizing determinant (PND) of the gp120 glycoprotein of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) (MN isolate) were grown as uncomplexed and peptide complexed forms. Crystals of the free Fab grew from high salt in orthorhombic space groups P2(1)2(1)2(1) and I222 and from polyethylene glycol in space groups P1 and P2(1). Seeds from either the P1 and P2(1) native (uncomplexed) Fab crystals induced nucleation of crystals of the Fab complexed to a 16-residue synthetic peptide corresponding to the PND when streak seeded into preequilibrated solutions of this complex. Data were collected from these complex crystals and from each of the four native Fab forms to at least 2.8 A resolution. The genes for the variable domain of the Fab were cloned and sequenced and the primary amino acid sequence was deduced from this information. Knowledge of the three-dimensional structure of this Fab-peptide complex will be important in the understanding of the PND of HIV-1 and its recognition by neutralizing monoclonal antibodies.