Glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) M1 and T1 are known to be polymorphic in humans. Both polymorphisms are due to gene deletions, which are responsible for the existence of null genotypes. The gene defect of GSTT1 has been reported to be associated with an increased risk of myelodysplastic syndromes, astrocytoma and meningioma. A lack of GSTM1 was associated with tobacco smoke-induced lung and bladder cancer. In this study we examined whether the GSTT1 and/or GSTM1 homozygous null genotypes were associated with an increased risk of ovarian cancer using a multiplex polymerase chain reaction protocol. The GSTT1 null genotype was observed in 14% of the control subjects that had never suffered from neoplastic disease (n = 115) and in 16% of the patients affected with ovarian cancer (n = 103, OR 0.87, 95% CI 0.39-1.92, P = 0.73). A lack of GSTM1 was observed in 38% of the control subjects and in 46% of the patients (OR 0.77, 95% CI 0.44-1.32). This difference was not significant (P = 0.34). Similarly, no significant differences were obtained if GSTT1 and/or GSTM1 null genotypes were analyzed in subgroups of control subjects and ovarian cancer patients between the ages of 20-40, 41-70 and 71-90 years and in individuals with a positive family history of neoplastic disease. GSTT1 and/or GSTM1 null genotypes were not significantly associated with the histologic type and grade or FIGO (International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics) stages of the ovarian carcinomas. In conclusion, GSTT1 and/or GSTM1 null genotypes are not markers for an increased risk of ovarian cancer.