Cholesterol, triacylglicerol and phospholipid content was analysed in Xenopus embryos during their early development (from day 1 to day 6). Triacylglicerols decrease significantly during the analysed stages and this can be explained by their use as energy substrate. Cholesterol and phospholipids, on the contrary, remain constant and are probably redistributed inside the embryo. The different phospholipid classes were separated by HPTLC. A constant decrease of PC and a marked increase of PS has been observed. The fatty acid composition of the single phospholipid classes has been analysed.