Twenty-four-week-old white Leghorn layers were inoculated subcutaneously with a killed Newcastle disease-infectious bronchitis (Massachusetts type) virus (MIBV) vaccine. Twenty-eight weeks after vaccination, the birds were challenged intraocularly with the Arkansas strain of infectious bronchitis virus (AIBV) to determine the effects of heterologous virus exposure on egg production, egg quality and serum antibody response of the birds. The challenged hens laid significantly (P less than 0.005) fewer eggs than the unchallenged layers. Eggs laid by the unchallenged groups weighed significantly more (P less than 0.005) than those laid by the challenged groups. Further, the internal quality (Haugh units) and shell quality of eggs laid by the AIBV-challenged hens was significantly (P less than 0.005) inferior to those from the unchallenged hens. In addition, the AIBV-challenged hens laid more soft-shell, misshapen and small eggs than the unchallenged hens. The Arkansas serum haemagglutination inhibition (AIBV-HI) titres of AIBV challenged birds increased up to four weeks after challenge. The corresponding MIBV haemagglutination-inhibition (MIBV-HI) titres decreased during the same period. The study indicates that killed MIBV vaccine offered no protection to birds exposed to heterologous AIBV.