P-selectin, found in storage granules of platelets and endothelial cells, can be rapidly expressed upon stimulation. Mice lacking this membrane receptor exhibit a severe impairment of leukocyte rolling. We observed that, in addition to leukocytes, platelets were rolling in mesenteric venules of wild-type mice. To investigate the role of P-selectin in this process, resting or activated platelets from wild-type or P-selectin-deficient mice were fluorescently labeled and transfused into recipients of either genotype. Platelet-endothelial interactions were monitored by intravital microscopy. We observed rolling of either wild-type or P-selectin-deficient resting platelets on wild-type endothelium. Endothelial stimulation with the calcium ionophore A23187 increased the number of platelets rolling 4-fold. Activated P-selectin-deficient platelets behaved similarly, whereas activated wild-type platelets bound to leukocytes and were seen rolling together. Platelets of either genotype, resting or activated, interacted minimally with mutant endothelium even after A23187 treatment. The velocity of platelet rolling was 6- to 9-fold greater than that of leukocytes. Our results demonstrate that (i) platelets roll on endothelium in vivo, (ii) this interaction requires endothelial but not platelet P-selectin, and (iii) platelet rolling appears to be independent of platelet activation, indicating constitutive expression of a P-selectin ligand(s) on platelets. We have therefore observed an interesting parallel between platelets and leukocytes in that both of these blood cell types roll on stimulated vessel wall and that this process is dependent on the expression of endothelial P-selectin.