ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The results of transcriptome microarray analysis are usually presented as a list of differentially expressed genes. As these lists can be long, it is hard to interpret the desired experimental treatment effect on the physiology of analysed tissue, e.g. via selected metabolic or other pathways. For some organisms, gene ontologies and data visualization software have been implemented to overcome this problem, whereas for others, software adaptation is yet to be done. RESULTS: We present the classification of tentative potato contigs from the potato gene index (StGI) available from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) into the MapMan ontology to enable the application of the MapMan family of tools to potato microarrays. Special attention has been focused on mapping genes that could not be annotated based on similarity to Arabidopsis genes alone, thus possibly representing genes unique for potato. 97 such genes were classified into functional BINs (i.e. functional classes) after manual annotation. A new pathway, focusing on biotic stress responses, has been added and can be used for all other organisms for which mappings have been done. The BIN representation on the potato 10 k cDNA microarray, in comparison with all putative potato gene sequences, has been tested. The functionality of the prepared potato mapping was validated with experimental data on plant response to viral infection. In total 43,408 unigenes were mapped into 35 corresponding BINs. CONCLUSION: The potato mappings can be used to visualize up-to-date, publicly available, expressed sequence tags (ESTs) and other sequences from GenBank, in combination with metabolic pathways. Further expert work on potato annotations will be needed with the ongoing EST and genome sequencing of potato. The current MapMan application for potato is directly applicable for analysis of data obtained on potato 10 k cDNA microarray by TIGR (The Institute for Genomic Research) but can also be used by researchers working on other potato gene sets. The potato mapping file and the stress mapping diagram are available from the MapMan website 1.