HCN profiles measured by solar occultation spectrometry during 10 balloon flights of the JPL MkIV instrument are presented. The HCN profiles reveal a compact correlation with stratospheric tracers. Calculations with a 2D-model using established rate coefficients for the reactions of HCN with OH and O(1D) severely underestimate the measured HCN in the middle and upper stratosphere. The use of newly available rate coefficients for these reactions gives reasonable agreement of measured and modeled HCN. An HCN yield of ∼30% from the reaction of CH3CN with OH is consistent with the measurements.