In some patients with multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1) it is not possible to identify a germline mutation in the MEN1 gene. We sought to document the loss of expression and function of the MEN1 gene product, menin, in the tumors of such a patient. The proband is an elderly female patient with primary hyperparathyroidism, pancreatic islet tumor, and breast cancer. Her son has primary hyperparathyroidism. No germline MEN1 mutation was identified in the proband or her son. However, loss of heterozygosity at the MEN1 locus and complete lack of menin expression were demonstrated in the proband's tumor tissue. The proband's cultured parathyroid cells lacked the normal reduction in proliferation and parathyroid hormone secretion in response to transforming growth factor- beta. This assessment provided insight into the molecular pathogenesis of the patient and provides evidence for a critical requirement for menin in the antiproliferative action of transforming growth factor-beta.