The metabolism of alpha-naphthoflavone (ANF) was studied in hepatic microsomes from rats, mice, rabbits, and hamsters, species in which ANF exerts its biological activities. The major metabolites produced by all species were ANF-5,6-oxide, ANF-6-phenol, and ANF-7,8-dihydrodiol. Minor metabolites produced by all species were ANF-5,6-dihydrodiol, ANF-7-phenol, and ANF-9-phenol. In general, the total rates of metabolism were similar within all species: 22-32 nmol ANF metabolized/15 min/mg protein. Mouse liver microsomes were approximately 1.7 to 2.9 times as active as the other species on a nanomole P-450 basis. The major sites of enzymatic oxidation were the 5,6 and 7,8 bonds of ANF where for all species, 94-71% and 15-46% of the total metabolism occurred, respectively.