A method has been described to quantify intracellular neutral lipid content in attached cells in microtiter cultures. The procedure was based on oil red O staining of neutral lipid and Coomassie brilliant blue G-250 staining of total cellular protein. Results were expressed as the ratio of lipid to protein, the "specific lipid content" index. This measurement was shown to closely correspond to actual lipid per cell measurements under experimental conditions. The procedure was specific for neutral lipids and sensitive (greater than or equal to 50 ng triglyceride/well). Additionally, cell proliferation measurements could be made simultaneously, using protein staining data. Chromatic endpoints were measured using a spectrophotometer capable of reading individual wells of a microtiter plate. The procedure is recommended for applications in which the endpoint is neutral lipid droplet accumulation in attached cultured cells.