PURPOSE: We evaluated allele frequencies and distribution of surfactant protein A2(SP-A2) in Korean neonates in order to estimate the prevalence of RDS, to find out new SP-A alleles, and to establish new steroid therapy. METHODS: Genomic DNA was extracted from 71 neonates and served as a template in PCR for genotype analysis. SP-A gene-specific amplications and gene-specific allele determinations were performed using PCR-cRFLP methods. RESULTS: The distribution for the alleles of the SP-A2 gene in the study population was 1A, 1A0, 1A1, 1A2, 1A3, 1A5, 1A6, 1A7, 1A8, 1A9, 1A11, 1A12. The specific frequencies for the alleles of the SP- A2 gene in the study population were : 1A=11.3%, 1A0=38%, 1A1=12.7%, 1A2=9.2%, 1A5=15.5%, 1A7= 2.9%, 1A8=4.9%, 1A9=2.2%, others=3.3%. CONCLUSION: The frequency of 1A0 was higher than the other SP-A2 alleles in Korean neonates. This finding suggests that the prevalence of RDS in Korea may be low compared with other countries. However, this finding also suggests that Korean neonates have a high risk of infection.