Several subunits of the glutamate receptor of the AMPA subtype have been cloned recently. These subunits, named GluR1, GluR2, GluR3, and GluR4, exist as two splicing variants (flip and flop). We have determined the subset of AMPA receptor subunits expressed by single cerebellar Purkinje cells in culture. This was achieved by combining whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and a molecular analysis, based on the polymerase chain reaction, of the messenger RNAs harvested into the patch pipette at the end of each recording. We found that each single cell expresses the messenger RNAs encoding the following five subunits: the flip and flop versions of GluR1 and GluR2 as well as GluR3flip, GluR2 being the most abundant. In addition, GluR3flop and GluR4flip were scarcely expressed in half of these neurons, and GluR4flop was never detected.