Autologous SMG fragments were implanted in tongues of male rats which were sacrificed 15–20 min, 24 hr, 72 hr, 1 week, or 8 weeks after implantation. The tongues were excised, fixed, and processed for light and electron microscopy. In addition, some rats were injected with [3H]-thymidine 1 hr before sacrifice and the labeling indices (L.I.) of the salivary epithelial and interstitial cells were calculated. Twenty-four hours after implantation, SMG autografts showed massive central necrosis with some acini and ducts surviving at the periphery of the lobules. There was marked infiltration of the autografts with neutrophils and macrophages. Also the basal laminae surrounding the necrotic acini and ducts remained intact. The morphology of the autografts after 72 hr was similar to that after 24 hr except that there was additional necrosis and acini and ducts could no longer be identified in the autografts. By 1 week after implantation, the autografts showed lobular morphogenesis, ductal branching, and revascularization. At this time, the regenerating salivary epithelium appeared undifferentiated with no evidence of secretory granules. The L.I. of interstitial and ductlike structures showed significant increases over control values at 1 week after implantation, and then declined toward control levels by 3 weeks after implantation. By 8 weeks after implantation, there was evidence of acinar and striated ductal cytodifferentiation in two autografts. The results emphasize the potential of SMG autografts to regenerate subsequent to severe tissue necrosis.