Avian sarcoma virus 17 (ASV17) is an acutely transforming retrovirus which carries the oncogene v-jun. The virus induces fibrosarcomas in chickens at the site of inoculation. Here we describe wound-related tumor formation in 77% of chickens inoculated with ASV17 in one wing and wounded by metal clip insertion in the opposite wing. Tumors from both wound-related and inoculation-related sites were histologically diagnosed as fibrosarcomas. Tissues cultured from both tumor sites produced infectious virus in culture and expressed high levels of the v-Jun oncoprotein detectable by immunofluorescent staining. By varying the time of wounding relative to virus inoculation we defined the early stages of wound healing (2-7 days postinoculation) as favoring wound-related tumor formation. Three other acutely transforming retroviruses containing oncogenes coding for nonreceptor protein tyrosine kinases (v-src, v-yes, and v-fps), inoculated in the same manner, induced wound-related tumors in all cases. We conclude that in chickens, ASV17 collaborates with wound healing to promote tumorigenesis by a process which may relate either to a biochemical function of Jun or to a more general, shared characteristic of transforming retroviruses.