The effects in vivo ACTH administration on the synthesis of mRNA coding for total adrenal proteins and for protein E a specific marker of ACTH action, have been studied. After 4 h of in vivo ACTH treatment, protein E is one of the major translational products. Its electrophoretic characteristics in a 2D gel acrylamide system are defined (molecular mass = 36,000 daltons, pHi = 7). We have investigated the effects of ACTH on both poly(A)-RNA coding for total adrenal proteins, and non-poly(A)-RNA. The time course of these effects is different: the effect on mRNA is maximal at 48 h whereas the effect on non-poly(A)-RNA continues to increase until the end of the experiment (5 days). In vitro translocational assays of mRNA indicate that the highest efficiency (protein synthesis/µg of mRNA) is observed after 4 h of ACTH treatment in vivo. After 5 days this efficiency is similar to that of mRNA extracted from non ACTH-treated rats.