We previously proposed that an enzymatic cooperation between Kupffer cells and hepatocytes may play an important role in cysteinyl leukotriene (LT) production in rat liver. Anin vitrotranscellular synthesis cysteinyl LTs by a Kupffer cell—hepatocyte coculture system was characterized here. Kupffer cells alone, with A23187 stimulation, did not generate cysteinyl LTs until supplemented either with isolated hepatocytes or with LTC4synthase and glutathione, indicating that Kupffer cells can synthesize LTA4but not convert it into LTC4. In contrast, hepatocytes converted the LTA4into cysteinyl LTs and further degraded the cysteinyl LTs. Cysteinyl LT production by the Kupffer cell—hapatocyte coculture system was optimized by addition of 1–3% serum albumin to the culture and by bringing the cell—cell distance closer to less than 3μ. Tumour necrosis factor also stimulated cysteinyl LT production by the coculture system. From these results, it is expected that the Kupffer cell—hepatocyte transcellular system for cysteinyl LT production actually functionsin vivo.