[en] The five exons and the 5' and 3'-untranslated regions (5'-UTR and 3'-UTR) of the oGH gene were screened for mutations using PCR-single strand conformation polymorphism (PCR-SSCP) procedures in 523 Serra da Estrela ewes and were found to be highly polymorphic. The region extending across and between the GH2-N and GH2-Z copies was sequenced allowing the design of primers for the specific PCR amplification of each copy. These were cloned and sequenced in 20 animals representative of all SSCP patterns. The corresponding genotypes were established for each copy following nucleotide sequencing of SSCP alleles. Twenty-four polymorphic sites were found at the GH2-N (or GH1) and fourteen at the GH2-Z copies. Eight amino acid substitutions were predicted at the GH2-N and six at the GH2-Z copies. Milk yield adjusted to 150 lactation days was analysed for the genotype of each oGH gene copy taken separately or together (associated genotypes) by restricted maximum likelihood (REML) through a univariate best linear unbiased prediction (BLUP) animal model with repeated measures. Significant associations between genotypes and milk yield were observed. Within GH2-N genotypes there was a milk yield differential of 21.4+/-0.2 l/150 d between the most (N7) and the least (N5) productive ones. Within GH2-Z genotypes there was a differential of 21.6+/-0.2 l/150 d between the most (Z8) and the least (Z1) productive ones. The effect of associated GH2-N and GH2-Z genotypes revealed a differential of 39.6+/-0.3 l/150 d between the most (N1+Z7) and the least (N3+Z2) productive associated genotypes. The results show that GH2-N and GH2-Z genotypes significantly affect milk yield in Serra da Estrela ewes. Moreover, the apparent joint effect of GH2-N and GH2-Z genotype could improve milk yield in 25% as compared with the mean milk production of the analysed population.