Polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN) from three patients deficient in the CD18 family of receptors (LFA-1, CR3, and p150,95) exhibited an inability to bind erythrocytes coated with C3bi or bacterial LPS. These observations confirm that the CD18 family, and CR3 in particular, can bind the structurally dissimilar molecules C3bi and LPS. Further studies showed that LPS and C3bi bind to CR3 at distinct sites. mAb OKM10 against CR3 blocked binding of C3bi to PMN but did not block the binding of LPS. In contrast, mAb 904, directed against a different epitope on CR3, blocked binding of LPS to PMN but not binding of C3bi, thus suggesting that different regions of CR3 were involved in binding these two ligands. In addition, synthetic peptides based on the sequence in C3bi recognized by CR3 competitively blocked the binding of C3bi to CR3 but did not block the binding of LPS. Rather, occupation of the peptide binding site on CR3 by the synthetic peptides enhanced binding of LPS. These results indicate that CR3 has two distinct binding sites, one that recognizes ligands composed of protein and a second that recognizes LPS.