The hepatic transport of bile acid conjugates was studied in the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat, a Sprague-Dawley mutant rat with conjugated hyperbilirubinemia. Serum bile acid levels were increased, bile acid-independent bile flow was decreased and biliary glutathione concentrations were markedly decreased in the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat. Biliary excretion of sulfobromophthalein was markedly impaired and almost no glutathione conjugate was excreted in the bile of the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat. Biliary excretion of lithocholate-3-O-glucuronide and lithocholate-3-sulfate in the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat was markedly delayed, whereas that of lithocholate was only slightly delayed. After [14C]chenodeoxycholate infusion (1 mumol/min/100 gm for 60 min), the increases in bile flow and biliary excretion of isotope in the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat were not so prominent as those observed in control rats, and the glucuronide of chenodeoxycholate, which constituted about 15% of biliary chenodeoxycholate in control rats, was not observed in the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat. Initial uptake of lithocholate and its glucuronide and sulfate by isolated hepatocytes was not impaired in the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat; the profiles of cytosolic bile acid binding proteins in Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat liver were identical to those in control liver. These data indicate that the Eisai hyperbilirubinuria rat has excretory impairment of organic anions, bile acid glucuronide and sulfate and that it has characteristics very similar to those of the hyperbilirubinemic mutant Wistar rats TR- and GY.