The aim of the present study was to establish the neurochemical profile of amacrine and horizontal cells during ontogeny in the guinea pig, a precocial species where significant retinal development occurs prenatally as opposed to altricial species where development largely occurs postnatally. The expression of neurochemical markers of horizontal cells and specific amacrine cell populations was investigated from 20 days of gestation (dg, term approximately 67 dg) to adulthood. Amacrine cell populations were identified immunohistochemically using antibodies to gamma-amino-butyric acid, cholineacetyltransferase, calbindin, calretinin, neuronal nitric oxide synthetase and tyrosine hydroxylase; horizontal cells were labelled with calbindin. All markers were present at 30 dg and had attained their mature (adult) laminar distribution and expression by 60 dg. Horizontal cells appeared in their final location at 30 dg with amacrine cell populations appearing in their final locations by 45 dg. Thus, in the guinea pig retina, the amacrine and horizontal cell populations investigated in this study are fully mature prior to birth.