We have used pulse-chase labeling of Chinese hamster ovary cells with choline followed by plasma membrane isolation on cationic beads to study the transport of phosphatidylcholine from the endoplasmic reticulum to the plasma membrane. We have found that the process is rapid (t1/2 [25 degrees C] = 2 min) and not affected by energy poisons or by cytochalasin B, colchicine, monensin, or carbonyl cyanide p-chlorophenylhydrazone. Cooling cells to 0 degree C effectively stops the transport process. The intracellular transport of phosphatidylcholine is distinct in several ways from the intracellular transport of cholesterol (Kaplan, M. R., and R. D. Simoni, 1985, J. Cell. Biol., 101:446-453).

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