[en] A gel-like reconstituted basement membrane matrix containing type IV collagen, laminin, entactin, nidogen, and heparan sulfate proteoglycan was used to examine the interactions between normal calf skin fibroblasts and basement membranes. Within 6 h after seeding, fibroblasts initiated a migration that resulted in the formation of a cellular network after 1 day of culture on top of the gel. Electron microscopy revealed that fibroblasts were able to remodel the basement membrane matrix by penetrating into the gel (from day 3), depositing fibronectin and collagen fibers, and retracting this extracellular matrix. Fibroblasts cultured on the Engelbreth-Holm-Swarm reconstituted basement membrane matrix displayed ultrastructural features characterized by a poor synthetic apparatus (rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi vesicles), a large cytoskeleton, and intracytoplasmic vesicles containing laminin. Thus the reconstituted basement membrane matrix is remodeled by skin fibroblasts, and reciprocally their ultrastructural morphologic features are affected by this matrix.