The origin of the nests of granular cells comprising choristomas of the infundibular process and the stalk of the pituitary gland is controversial. Using electron microscopic immunocytochemistry, the astrocytic marker, glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP), has been demonstrated diffusely in the cytoplasm of some of the granular cells, but not within the granules or cellular organelles of some of the granular cells. Cytoplasmic filaments were not detected in these granular cells, but cells with abundant filaments extended processes between the granular cells. These filament-rich cells stained much more intensely for GFAP than the positively staining granular cells. The expression of GFAP by the granular cells and the filament-containing cells between them in the pituitary implies an astrocytic origin for both cell types, but the absence of filaments in the granular cells suggests that the GFAP is in an unpolymerized (soluble) form. The granular cell is likely to represent a transitional cell type of astrocytic origin in which the glial filaments have undergone partial or complete degradation.