1) SC receptors were not detected on the surface of human PBL before or after PWM stimulation or on the surface of established lymphoblastoid cell lines. 2) SC binding was detected in the cytoplasm of differentiated lymphoid cells. The majority of the SC-binding cells contained intracellular IgA. 3) The binding of polymeric IgA to the surface of human epithelial cells (colonic carcinoma HT-29) was dependent on the presence of SC. 4) These findings indicate that SC is a receptor and possible transport protein for polymeric immunoglobulins, but that it is not directly involved in the homing of the IgA precursor cells to secretory tissues.