The partial androgen insensitivity syndrome occurs in 46,XY subjects with phenotypes ranging from perineoscrotal hypospadias with cryptorchidism and micropenis (mild undervirilisation) to clitoromegaly and partial labial fusion (marked undervirilisation). Within an affected family, wide variation in the degree of genital ambiguity between individuals can be seen. Two cousins of a previously reported subject who had severe genital ambiguity and partial androgen insensitivity were investigated. Neither of the cousins had genital abnormalities as marked as the index case, who also had qualitatively abnormal androgen binding and two mutations of the androgen receptor gene. Despite marked phenotypic differences between the index case and his cousins, similar androgen binding and the same androgen receptor mutations were shown in the cousins. Furthermore, one of the androgen receptor gene mutations has been shown in the mother and sister of one of the boys indicating that they are carriers. Thus phenotypic variation in families affected by partial androgen insensitivity is dependent on factors other than abnormalities of the androgen receptor gene alone. Although carrier status in partial androgen insensitivity can be determined, the severity of genital abnormalities in an affected offspring cannot be reliably predicted.