Ras-proteins are guanine nucleotide binding proteins, which, in the GTP bound state emit a strong mitogenic signal. In the GDP bound state, the protein appears inactive. We have found that stimulation by insulin of cells expressing elevated levels of insulin receptors results in a rapid conversion of Ras-GDP into Ras-GTP. This process is part of the signalling pathway leading to immediate-early gene expression and a mitogenic response. There seems to be no involvement of Ras-GTP formation in the process of insulin stimulated glucose transport. Though the precise mechanism by which Ras is converted to the GTP bound state remains to be established, a tight correlation exists between receptor autophosphorylation and Ras-GTP formation.