Experiments were carried out on the rat liver metallothionein induced by X-ray irradiation. The following results were obtained. 1) The metallothionein content of liver cells increased for a certain time after X-ray irradiation. SOD activity showed an upward trend in accordance with the increasing metallothionein. 2) The increase in metallothio-nein content induced kept in certain level with the time course after irradiation. 3) This metallothionein contains Zn(2+), and also has the ability to bind Cd(2+). 4) The SDS-PAGE pattern indicated that this metallothionein consists of two subunits having molecular weights of 11,000 and 9,000 respectivily. Also this metallothionein showed the same electrophoretic properties as that of Zn(2+)-induced metallothionein.