RP135 is a 24-residue peptide corresponding to the principal neutralizing determinant of the envelope glycoprotein gp120 of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1. We have studied the conformation of RP135 in complex with a neutralizing antibody 0.5β raised against gp120 by 2D NMR spectroscopy. The antigenic determinant recognized by this antibody was mapped using a combination of HOHAHA and ROESY measurements, in which resonances of the Fab and the tightly bound peptide residues are eliminated and the mobile residues of the bound peptide are sequentially assigned. We found that residues Ser6 - Thr19 are part of the epitope, while Lys5 and Ile20 are at its boundaries. Difference spectroscopy was applied to study the conformation of the bound peptide representing the epitope within the 52 kDa of the Fab complex. Specific residues of the peptide were deuterated or replaced and the difference between the NOESY spectrum of the complex with the unlabeled residue and the NOESY spectrum of the complex with the modified residue revealed the interactions of the labeled residue both within the peptide and with the Fab fragment. A total of 122 distance restraints derived from the difference spectra enabled the calculation of the structure of the bound peptide. The peptide forms a 10-residue loop, while the two segments flanking this loop interact extensively with each other and possibly form anti-parallel β-strands. The loop conformation could be observed due to the unusual large size (17 residues) of the antigenic determinant recognized by 0.5β.