1. The influence of cations on the active transport into cells of rat-brain-cortex slices of l-histidine, an amino acid that is not metabolized by this tissue, has been studied. 2. Like other amino acids, l-histidine accumulated in the cells in the presence of glucose in concentrations up to over double that in the incubation medium. 3. The active transport of l-histidine was highest in a medium containing Ca(2+) (3mm). The addition of K(+) (27mm) led to a marked decrease in the intracellular concentration of l-histidine, though the oxygen uptake of the slices was higher. 4. The active l-histidine transport was inhibited by NH(4) (+). The inhibitory effect increased with the NH(4) (+) concentration, being about 25% at 8mm, 65% at 20mm, and 90% at 27 and 50mm. The oxygen uptake of the brain slices was depressed by only 25% by the highest NH(4) (+) concentration used, and less by lower concentrations.