The NADPH:protochlorophyllide oxidoreductase of barley has been solubilized from etioplast membranes and purified to apparent homogeneity. The highest specific activity measured for the purified enzyme was 1.6 nmol chlorophyllide formed (mg protein-1) per flash. Electrophoretic analysis of the purified enzyme on sodium dodecylsulfate/polyacrylamide gels revealed only one polypeptide of Mr 36000. Durig glycerol gradient centrifugation the enzyme migrates as a low-molecular-weight component. It is proposed that each enzyme molecule contains only one polypeptide chain. Assuming a molecular weight of 36000 for the enzyme, it was calculated that two or three protochlorophyllide molecules are bound to each enzyme molecule.