Reconstitution of the immune system following T-cell-depleted bone marrow transplantation (BMT) in children has yet to be fully elucidated. Thus, we prospectively studied the recovery of immune function in 64 children who underwent T-lymphocyte-depleted marrow transplants using either matched family member donors or matched unrelated donors. We measured in vitro posttransplantation proliferative responses to phytohemagglutinin (PHA), concanavalin A, pokeweed mitogen, and Candida albicans antigen and assessed unidirectional allogeneic mixed-lymphocyte culture (MLC) responses at various times. A total of 129 healthy individuals served as normal controls for these assays. Responses to T-cell mitogens normalized within 12 months posttransplantation, while MLC responses normalized by 9 months. The presence of graft-versus-host disease (grade II or greater) and cytomegalovirus infection was associated with delays in immune function recovery. Importantly, immune function recovery correlated temporally with a rise in peripheral lymphocyte count. In contrast, the CD4/CD8 ratio was not predictive of immune recovery. Knowledge of immune function recovery may guide clinicians in devising strategies to minimize the risk of infection post-BMT.