Possible genetic influences on glomerular filtration rate and electrolyte excretion were investigated in 55 (37 monozygotic, 18 dizygotic) young adult white twin pairs. Subjects were studied during a five-day hospitalization involving sodium loading and sodium depletion. No evidence of genetic variability was found in the control levels of serum or urine sodium and potassium. Following a saline infusion it was possible to detect genetic influence in electrolyte handling. Creatinine clearance, used as a measure of glomerular filtration rate, did not appear to be genetically mediated. The results indicate that genetic factors are important in sodium handling in normal individuals and that this is independent of glomerular filtration rate.