A radioimmunoassay has been developed and used to measure serum neurone specific enolase (NSE) concentrations in 24 patients, following cerebral infarction. A significant correlation between cerebral infarct volume and maximum serum NSE concentration was observed (P= 0·047). Serum NSE was also assayed at times 24, 48, 72 and 96 h post ictus. At 72 h a significant correlation existed between serum NSE levels and infarct volume (P= 0·012), and levels appeared to be approaching statistical significance at 48 h (P=0·067). No correlation existed at 24 and 96 h. In addition serum concentrations of NSE were compared to clinical outcome as determined by the Glasgow Outcome Score. Using the Mann-Whitney U test, there was no significant difference in maximum NSE level between patients graded 1–3 on the Glasgow Outcome Score and those graded 4 and 5. However, further studies are required on a larger population to more completely assess this. NSE may prove to be a useful marker of neuronal damage in the study of stroke, with particular application in the assessment of treatment.