Endocrine tumors (ETs) of pancreas and duodenum occur sporadically and as a part of multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1). The MEN1 tumor suppressor gene has been localized to chromosome 11q13 by linkage analysis but has not yet isolated. Previous allelic deletion studies in enteropancreatic ETs suggested MEN1 gene involvement in tumorigenesis of familial pancreatic ETs (nongastrinomas) and sporadic gastrinomas. However, only a few MEN1-associated duodenal gastrinomas and sporadic pancreatic nongastrinomas have been investigated. We used tissue microdissection to analyze 95 archival pancreatic and duodenal ETs and metastases from 50 patients for loss of heterozygosity (LOH) on 11q13 with 10 polymorphic markers spanning the area of the putative MEN1 gene. Chromosome 11q13 LOH was detected in 23 of 27 (85%) MEN1-associated pancreatic ETs (nongastrinomas), 14 of 34 (41%) MEN1-associated gastrinomas, 3 of 16 (19%) sporadic insulinomas, and 8 of 18 (44%) sporadic gastrinomas. Analysis of LOH on 11q13 showed different deletion patterns in ETs from different MEN1 patients and in multiple tumors from individual MEN1 patients. The present results suggest that the MEN1 gene plays a role in all four tumor types. The lower rate of 11q13 LOH in MEN1-associated and sporadic gastrinomas and sporadic insulinomas as compared to MEN1 nongastrinomas may reflect alternative genetic pathways for the development of these tumors or mechanisms of the MEN1 gene inactivation that do not involve large deletions. The isolation of the MEN1 gene is necessary to further define its role in pathogenesis of pancreatic and duodenal ETs.