Acyl-CoA-binding protein has been isolated independently by five different groups based on its ability to (1) displace diazepam from the GABAA receptor, (2) affect cell growth, (3) induce medium-chain acyl-CoA-ester synthesis, (4) stimulate steroid hormone synthesis, and (5) affect glucose-induced insulin secretion. In this survey evidence is presented to show that ACBP is able to act as an intracellular acyl-CoA transporter and acyl-CoA pool former. The rat ACBP genomic gene consists of 4 exons and is actively expressed in all tissues tested with highest concentration being found in liver. ACBP consists of 86 amino acid residues and contains 4 alpha-helices which are folded into a boomerang type of structure with alpha-helices 1, 2 and 4 in the one arm and alpha-helix 3 and an open loop in the other arm of the boomerang. ACBP is able to stimulate mitochondrial acyl-CoA synthetase by removing acyl-CoA esters from the enzyme. ACBP is also able to desorb acyl-CoA esters from immobilized membranes and transport and deliver these for mitochondrial beta-oxidation. ACBP efficiently protects acetyl-CoA carboxylase and the mitochondrial ADP/ATP translocase against acyl-CoA inhibition. Finally, ACBP is shown to be able to act as an intracellular acyl-CoA pool former by overexpression in yeast. The possible role of ACBP in lipid metabolism is discussed.