Brefeldin A (BFA) blocks secretion in mammalian cells and causes the redistribution of Golgi resident membrane proteins to the endoplasmic reticulum (Klausner, R. D., Donaldson, J. G., and Lippincott-Schwartz, J. (1992) J. Cell Biol. 116, 1071-1080). The target(s) of BFA and its mechanism of action remain unknown. The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae represents an ideal organism in which to identify the BFA targets, since many molecules essential for vesicular traffic have been already identified taking advantage of the powerful genetics of this system. Unfortunately, wild type S. cerevisiae strains are largely insensitive to BFA (Hayashi, T., Takatsuki, A., and Tamura, G. (1982) Agric. Biol. Chem. 46, 2241-2248). Here we demonstrate that an erg6 mutant (Gaber, R., Copple, D., Kennedy, B., Vidal, M., and Bard, M. (1989) Mol. Cell. Biol. 9, 3447-3456) defective in the biosynthesis of ergosterol is sensitive to BFA. Treatment of erg6 cells with BFA results in an arrest in growth and causes a block in secretion similar to that seen in mammalian cells treated with BFA. Our data suggest that the changes in the erg6 strain allows BFA entry and that this strain can be used to examine the molecular mechanism of BFA action.