4-hydroxyandrostenedione, a potent inhibitor of the aromatase (oestrogen synthetase) system, was given to 11 patients with metastatic breast cancer. After a single 500 mg intramuscular injection a sustained reduction of serum oestradiol was observed for at least 1 week in all patients in whom the steroid was measured. 4 patients responded to treatment for periods of up to 4 months, and healing of bone metastases and reduction in size of soft-tissue metastases was evident. The only side-effects were pain at the injection site and hot flushes. 4-hydroxyandrostenedione is a new and specific aromatase inhibitor which shows promise in the treatment of patients with metastatic breast cancer.