The transporter associated with antigen processing (TAP) translocates antigenic peptides from the cytosol into the lumen of the endoplasmic reticular and plays a critical role in the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecule-mediated antigenic presentation pathway. In this study, the porcine TAP1 gene was mapped to the pig chromosome 7 (SSC7) and was closely linked to the marker SSC2B02 (retention fraction=43%, LOD=15.18). Subcellular localization of TAP1 by transient transfection of PK15 cells indicated that the TAP1 protein might be located in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in pig kidney epithelial cells (PK-15). Gene expression analysis by semi-quantitative RT-PCR revealed that TAP1 was selectively expressed in some immune and immune-related tissues. Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) analysis revealed that this gene was up-regulated after treatments that mimic viral and bacterial infection (polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid (poly(I:C)) and lipopolysaccharide (LPS), respectively). In addition, elevated TAP1 expression was detected after porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) infection in porcine white blood cells (WBCs). One single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in exon 3 of TAP1 was detected in a Landrace pig population by Bsp143I restriction enzyme digestion. Different genotypes of this SNP had significant associations (P<0.05) with the red blood cell distribution width (RDW) of 1-day-old (1 d) pigs (P=0.0168), the PRRSV antibody level (PRRSV Ab) (P=0.0445) and the absolute lymphocyte count (LYM#) (P=0.024) of 17 d pigs. Our results showed that the TAP1 gene might have important roles in swine immune responses, and these results provide useful information for further functional studies.