1. Plasma membranes were isolated from Krebs II ascite cells grown in the mouse. Cells were disrupted by nitrogen cavitation in an isotonic alkaline buffer containing magnesium and ATP. Isolation was performed in an alkaline-buffered self-generating gradient of Percoll with an angular rotor. At each step of the preparation, the pH appeared as the critical aspect of our procedure. 2. External membrane markers were concanavalin A and 5'-nucleotidase (EC 22.214.171.124). They reached a relative specific activity of 10, whereas this value was only of 0.7 for the endoplasmic reticulum marker, NADH dehydrogenase (EC 126.96.36.199). 3. Plasma membrane from 4 ml packed cells were isolated within 1 h after homogenization with good yield: 50% and 67% of total [3H]concanavalin A and 5'-nucleotidase, respectively, were recovered in the two plasma membrane fractions. 4. Electron microscopy examination showed the presence of vesicles of different sizes devoid of other structural contaminants. 5. Using the specific binding of concanavalin A to the external cell membrane, it was calculated that about 50% of the total cell phospholipid and 10% protein are located in the plasma membrane. Their sphingomyelin content is much higher than in the whole cell, in contrast to phosphatidylinositol, known as a more specific endoplasmic reticulum phospholipid.