Two different isoforms of the inhibitory glycine receptor were identified during postnatal development of rat spinal cord. A neonatal form characterized by low strychnine binding affinity, altered antigenicity, and a ligand binding subunit differing in mol. wt (49 kd) from that of the adult receptor (48 kd) predominates at birth (70% of the total receptor protein). Separation from the adult form could be achieved by either use of a selective antibody or glycine gradient elution of 2-aminostrychnine affinity columns. Both isoforms co-purify with the mol. wt 93 kd peripheral membrane protein of the postsynaptic glycine receptor complex.