The rate of ribosomal protein gene (rp-gene) transcription in yeast is accurately adjusted to the cellular requirement for ribosomes under various growth conditions. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying this co-ordinated transcriptional control have not yet been elucidated. Transcriptional activation of rp-genes is mediated through two different multifunctional transacting factors, ABF1 and RAP1. In this report, we demonstrate that changes in cellular rp-mRNA levels during varying growth conditions are not parallelled by changes in the in vitro binding capacity of ABF1 or RAP1 for their cognate sequences. In addition, the nutritional upshift response of rp-genes observed after addition of glucose to a culture growing on a non-fermentative carbon source turns out not to be the result of increased expression of the ABF1 and RAP1 genes or of elevated DNA-binding activity of these factors. Therefore, growth rate-dependent transcription regulation of rp-genes is most probably not mediated by changes in the efficiency of binding of ABF1 and RAP1 to the upstream activation sites of these genes, but rather through other alterations in the efficiency of transcription activation. Furthermore, we tested the possibility that cAMP may play a role in elevating rp-gene expression during a nutritional shift-up. We found that the nutritional upshift response occurs normally in several mutants defective in cAMP metabolism.