Serum samples from 26 normal volunteers were evaluated by isotype-specific ELISA for the presence of IgG and IgM antibodies directed at IgA. Although there were wide variations in antibody levels, anti-IgA antibodies of both isotopes were found in all individuals tested. The anti-IgA activity was detected against a variety of polymeric and monomeric IgA1 and IgA2 myeloma proteins containing both κ and λ light chains. By using Fab and Fc fragments generated by incubation of an IgA1 myeloma protein with IgA1 protease, it was shown that the anti-IgA activity was specific for the Fab portion of the IgA molecule. It was also demonstrated that the serum of two individuals contained both IgG and IgM activity directed at autologous affinity-purified IgA. IgM antibody levels against both whole IgA and Fab of IgA were significantly higher than IgG antibody levels. Cells producing anti-IgA antibodies of both isotypes were detected in lipopolysaccharide-stimulated human spleen.