Natural rubber latex allergy is an IgE-mediated disease that is caused by proteins that elute from commercial latex products. A complementary DNA (cDNA) coding for Hev b 9, an enolase (2-phospho- d-glycerate hydrolyase) and allergen from latex of the rubber tree Hevea brasiliensis, was amplified by PCR. The PCR primers were designed according to conserved regions of enolases from plants. The obtained cDNA amplification product consisted of 1651 bp and encoded a protein of 445 amino-acid residues with a calculated molecular mass of 47.6 kDa. Sequence comparisons revealed high similarities of the Hevea latex enolase to mold enolases that have been identified as important allergens. In addition, the crucial amino-acid residues that participate in the formation of the catalytic site and the Mg2+ binding site of enolases were also conserved. Hevea latex enolase was produced as a recombinant protein in Escherichia coli with an N-terminal hexahistidyl tag, and purified by affinity chromatography. The yield amounted to 110 mg of purified Hev b 9 per litre of bacterial culture. The recombinant allergen bound IgE from latex, as well as mold-allergic patients, in immunoblot and ELISA experiments. The natural enolase was isolated from Hevea latex by (NH4)2SO4 precipitation and ion exchange chromatography. The natural and the recombinant (r)Hev b 9 showed equivalent enzymatic activity. Patients’ IgE-antibodies preincubated with rHev b 9 lost their ability to bind to natural (n) Hev b 9, indicating the identity of the B-cell epitopes on both molecules. Cross-reactivity with two enolases from Cladosporium herbarum and Alternaria alternata was determined by inhibition of IgE-binding to these enolases by rHev b 9. Therefore, enolases may represent another class of highly conserved enzymes with allergenic potentials.