The lipid compositions of two azole-sensitive (A and B2630) and two azole-resistant (AD and KB) strains of the opportunistic fungal pathogen Candida albicans were studied by using several lipid extraction procedures: no differences were observed between the lipid content or total phospholipid/neutral lipid ratios of the four strains. All contained phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylserine as major phospholipids, with smaller amounts of phosphatidylglycerol and diphosphatidylglycerol; the relative proportions of these lipids differed between all four strains. The fatty acid composition of each major phospholipid within each strain differed, and there were also interstrain differences. A marked effect of culture growth phase in batch culture on lipid composition was observed. The major neutral lipids in each strain were triacylglycerol, non-esterified sterol and non-esterified fatty acid. The fatty acid compositions of the three fatty-acid-containing neutral lipids were distinct from each other and the phospholipids, and there were also interstrain differences. All strains possessed (lyso)phospholipase activity, which was non-specific. The proportions of triacylglycerol and non-esterified fatty acid did not vary between strains, but the azole-resistant strains AD and KB contained more non-esterified sterol, giving them a phospholipid/sterol ratio approximately half that of azole-sensitive strains. There appeared to be a relationship between the phospholipid/sterol ratio of exponentially growing sensitive strains and their ability to take up azole; this did not extend to the resistant strains, which either did not take up azole (AD and KB) or took it up at a faster rate (Darlington) than sensitive strains.