k9 killer toxin from Hansenula mrakii was used to select a number of resistant mutants from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Preliminary biochemical and genetic studies showed that some of them acquired structural defects in the cell wall. One of these mutants, the knr4-1 mutant, displays a number of cell wall defects, including osmotic sensitivity; sensitivity to cercosporamide, a known antifungal agent; and resistance to Zymolyase, a (1,3)-beta-glucanase. We report here the isolation and analysis of the KNR4 gene. DNA sequence analysis revealed an uninterrupted open reading frame which contains five potential start codons. The longest coding template encodes a protein of 505 amino acids with a calculated molecular mass of 57,044 Da. A data base search revealed 100% identity with a nuclear protein, SMI1p. Disruption of the KNR4 locus does not result in cell death; however, it leads to reduced levels of both (1,3)-beta-glucan synthase activity and (1,3)-beta-glucan content in the cell wall. The gene was mapped to the right arm of chromosome VII.