A technique of delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) skin reaction to a contact sensitizing agent, oxazolone, was used to assess the effects of uremia on cell-mediated immunity in chronically uremic mice and, for comparison, sham-operated and normal controls. The first objective was to establish that DTH responses are reduced in animals with renal failure. To do this, mice were made uremic by a combination of electrocoagulation of the entire surface of one kidney and subsequent contralateral nephrectomy; studies included biochemical and hematological evaluation using blood urea nitrogen level and hemoglobin concentration as routine indices to assess the degree and consequence of uremia, respectively. The second objective was to apply the technique to observe and compare changes during uremic states of varying severity and duration. A modest, although significant, decrease in both the induction and maintenance of DTH responses was observed in the mice with severe renal failure only (BUN above l00mg/dl). This immunosuppressive effect was manifest early and persisted unchanged throughout the entire observation period (3–9 weeks). This study presents new evidence that severe uremia readily produces in the mouse sustained, albeit mild, changes in cell-mediated immunity. Furthermore the ability to elicit DTH skin reaction in the chronically uremic mouse offers a versatile system for studying changes in cell-mediated immunity occurring during uremia with a broad range of potential applicability.