Previous studies on the coding sequences of DNAs for the alpha 1(IV) chain of basement membrane collagen demonstrated a striking homology between the first 115 and the second 114 amino acids of the globular (NC1) domain of the protein. Also, alignment of the 12 cysteine residues indicated that the homology was particularly strong around three paired clusters of amino acids around cysteine residues. Here we have isolated a cosmid clone containing the 3'-end of the gene. Analysis of the clone and previously isolated lambda clones demonstrated that the intron--exon patterns of the gene does not reflect the homology in the protein. Therefore the homology cannot have arisen in any simple manner from gene duplications.