We isolated PCR, RNA ligase-mediated rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RLM-RACE-PCR)-, and RT-PCR-generated clones from mouse kininogen family transcripts. DNA sequencing indicated that the clones were from two distinct genes. One set (K1) is from the previously reported mouse kininogen gene. The second set (K2) has an open reading frame, is 93% identical to K1 in the overlapping nucleotide sequence, and, unlike T-kininogens in the rat, encodes a bradykinin motif identical to K1. We discovered that K2 exists with two different 5' ends. We used RT-PCR to determine the distribution and relative abundance of K1 and K2 mRNA in mouse tissues. K2 is transcribed and K1 and K2 are generally both expressed in the same tissues; however, they differ in their regulation of the alternative splicing event that yields either low-molecular-weight kininogen (LMWK) or high-molecular-weight kininogen (HMWK). For example, in the liver K1 is expressed as both HMWK and LMWK, whereas K2 is only expressed as LMWK. Conversely, in the kidney K2 is strongly expressed as both HMWK and LMWK, whereas K1 is not expressed as HMWK and expressed only very weakly as LMWK.