A sulfated 100K-dalton glycoprotein has been shown to be released into the culture medium of melanoma cells. Monoclonal antibodies 10C5 and 11B5, which were raised to human melanoma cells, as well as HNK-1 bind to this glycoprotein. It is shown here that mouse anti-myelin-associated glycoprotein (MAG) carbohydrate antibodies raised to human MAG and a human IgM paraprotein associated with neuropathy also bind to the same 100K molecule. However, anti-MAG antibodies recognizing peptide epitopes do not appear to react with this glycoprotein of melanoma cells, a result suggesting that its similarity to MAG is restricted to shared carbohydrate moieties. The anti-melanoma antibodies (10C5 and 11B5) resemble HNK-1 in binding to MAG and to some 19-28K-dalton glycoproteins and sulfated, glucuronic acid-containing sphingoglycolipids of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). In addition, the anti-melanoma antibodies cross-react with neural cell adhesion molecule (N-CAM), an observation emphasizing the shared antigenicity between MAG and other adhesion molecules. The results demonstrate that the anti-melanoma antibodies fall into a class of monoclonal antibodies (including HNK-1, human IgM paraproteins associated with neuropathy, anti-human MAG antibodies, and L2 antibodies) that are characterized by reactivity against related carbohydrate determinants shared by human MAG, N-CAM, and several protein and lipid glycoconjugates of the PNS.