A group of 15 patients with metastatic colorectal adenocarcinoma received a combination of interferon γ (0.1 mg/m2, days 1-15) and the murine monoclonal antibody 17-1A (400 mg, days 5, 7, 9 and 12). The treatment was tolerated with minimal toxicity. Of the 14 evaluable patients, 13 developed human antibody to murine 17-1A, with 11 patients demonstrating antibody to the variable region of 17-1A (anti-idiotype). Antibody to the variable region was inhibited by 17-1A but not by mouse immunoglobulin. Sera from patients with substantial anti-idiotype reactivity were capable of inhibiting the binding of murine 17-1A to antigen expressing LS174-T cells thus indicating the presence of antibody directed against the 17-1A combining site (mirror-image anti-idiotype). The median survival of the whole group was 56 weeks and there was no correlation between clinical response/survival and the development of anti-idiotype antibody.