Biosynthesis of type IV collagen in the parietal endodermal cells of 12 day gestant Sherman rats was examined following intraconceptal injection of .3H-proline. The concepti were removed at times varying from 2 minutes to 24 hours after the injection. The parietal wall of the yolk sac, including endodermal cells and the associated basement membrane known as Reichert's membrane were processed for electron microscopic radioautography. Silver grains were counted over the organelles of endodermal cells as well as over Reichert's membrane. Radioactivity was high in endodermal cells during the first 2hr after 3H-proline injection and later dropped to some extent, while radioactivity rose in Reichert's membrane. Examination of endodermal cell organelles showed some early labeling over rER and Golgi apparatus without a clear-cut trend, except for a drop in Golgi label at late times after 3H-proline injection. The density of silver grains over secretory granules rose significantly by 40min. reached a high peak by 4hr and then declined at the time when radioactivity increased over Reichert's membrane. Furthermore, the radioactively-labeled secretory granules were localized mainly at the trans Golgi face soon after injection and near the cell surface adjacent to Reichert's membrane at later times. Biochemical reports indicate that a substantial amount of the proline taken up by the 12-14.5 day rat embryo endodermal cells is incorporated into type IV collagen. Since there is high labeling of the secretory granules from 40min to 4hr and the labeled granules are associated with the Golgi apparatus at early times, it is proposed that collagen precursors are processed through rER and Golgi apparatus, packaged into secretory granules and then transported to the cell surface where type IV collagen or its precursors are released and subsequently deposited into Reichert's membrane.