We investigated maternal IgM secretion in the ovary and the absorption of IgM by fetuses in a viviparous fish, Neoditrema ransonneti (Embiotocidae). Serum IgM, whose molecular weight was approx. 820 k, was purified by two steps of gel filtration chromatography. Immunohistochemistry and Western blotting revealed that IgM was secreted from the epithelia of the ovigerous lamellae of pregnant females into ovarian cavity fluid. The IgM-secreting activity of ovigerous folds showed notable changes according to the reproductive stage. In fetuses, IgM was absorbed as macromolecules by enterocytes of the hypertrophied hindgut. IgM in the fetal blood was also demonstrated, although its concentration remained low during gestation. These findings suggest that IgM was transported from the maternal tissues to embryos via a unique pathway in N. ransonneti.