Succinyl derivatives of gramicidin were tested for their ability to form channels in planar artificial lipid bilayers. Both N-succinyldeformylgramicidin methyl ester and charged O-succinylgramicidin formed channels, but the channels had markedly different sizes and lifetimes. This implies that gramicidin forms channels by end-to-end association. However, the doubly charged N,O-bissuccinyldeformylgramicidin was inactive, which suggests that only end-to-end association of gramicidin may result in channel formation.