The metabolism of isoniazid was investigated in 323 unrelated and healthy Nigerians in Lagos using a simple dosage and urinalysis procedure. The distribution was bimodal and the population frequency of rapid acetylators was 61.92%, a value higher than that for most Caucasian populations. Males and females were equally affected by the traits. Analysis of both the population and pedigree data showed that the slow acetylator phenotype is a recessive trait, and the gene frequency of the recessive allele as computed by maximum likelihood methods is 0.6175 ± 0.022. The clinical implications of these findings are discussed.