Abstract The present study documents the steady-state levels for the mRNAs encoding acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC), fatty acid synthase (FAS), stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD2) and brain long-chain acyl-CoA synthase (BLACS) during mouse development. It is shown that ACC and FAS mRNA levels are at a maximum 5 days after birth, a time when cell proliferation is intense in the mouse brain, and then decrease steadily to reach 20% of those maximal values at day 20. The ACC transcript isoforms, which were detected in the central nervous system (CNS), originated from promoter P2 of the ACC gene. They encode ACC enzymes which cannot be phosphorylated at the Ser-1200 locus, thus indicating that brain ACC is highly sensitive to citrate activation. The developmental pattern for the SCD2 mRNA level is different from that of true myelin genes, such as CGT. Indeed, the steady-state levels for SCD2 and CGT in 5-day-old brain represent 85% and 5% of their maximal values, respectively. BLACS expression rose during the developmental period studied, but a slow decrease in the mRNA levels was not observed after postnatal day 20, unlike in ‘myelin-specific’ genes. Therefore, it appears that the expression of the genes involved in fatty acid biosynthesis is independent of the myelinating signal in the mouse CNS.