To understand endocytic trafficking in Schizosaccharomyces pombe, we constructed an end4 disruption mutant. The end4+ gene encodes a protein homologous to Sla2p/End4p, which is essential for the assembly and function of the cytoskeleton and endocytosis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We characterized the fission yeast mutant end4Δ as well as ypt7Δ, which is deficient in vacuolar fusion and, hence, endocytosis. The delivery of FM4-64 to the vacuolar membrane, accumulation of Lucifer yellow CH and internalization of plasma membrane protein Map3–GFP were inhibited in the end4 mutant. Deletion of end4 resulted in pleiotropic phenotypes consistent with F-actin depolarization, including high temperature sensitivity, abnormal morphology and mating defects. Extensive missorting of carboxypeptidase Y was detected in the ypt7 mutant; however, little missorting was detected in the end4 mutant. These results indicate that End4p is essential for the internalization process and Ypt7p affects endocytosis at a post-internalization step after the intersection of the endocytic and the vacuolar protein-sorting pathways in fission yeast. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.