By means of light and electron microscopic immunocytochemistry, we have localized p80-coilin, a specific protein marker for coiled bodies, in mammalian cell lines as well as in primary rat neuron cultures. p80-coilin-stained nuclear bodies, which also contained fibrillarin, could be subsequently silver stained by a method specific for the visualization of nucleolar organizer regions. In cycling cells, most coiled bodies were not associated with nucleoli, whereas in rat neurons such as association was frequent. The treatment of cycling cells with actinomycin D or 5,6-dichloro-1-beta-D-ribo furanosyl-benzimidazole led to nucleolar segregation and/or disintegration, and to an association of p80-coilin staining structures with nucleoli. p80-coilin-positive structures contained fibrillarin in both untreated and treated cells. These results support the opinion that there might be a special association between coiled bodies and nucleoli, particularly in neuronal cells.