A number of studies have appeared recently on the underlying mechanisms of liposomecell interactions under in vitro conditions, in which isolated cell populations or cell lines were used. However, our knowledge of how liposomes interact with cells and the parameters that influence this in vivo is limited. We will summarize and discuss the relevant studies on this matter in this article. In addition, researchers in this field have long been aware of the interaction of liposomes with blood (or serum/plasma) proteins in vivo and their potential role in the process of the clearance of liposomes from the circulation. Some of the ‘opsonizing’ proteins, such as complement components, immunoglobulins, which enhance the interactions of liposomes with ‘phagocytic cells’ have been identified. However, the issue of which types of opsonins determine the fate of liposomes in vivo and how liposomal physicochemical properties such as size, charge and fluidity play an important role in the process of liposome clearance is not clear. Our own observations of one of opsonins, complement component are reviewed herein. As opposed to the fate of conventional liposomes, we briefly touch on the interaction of surface-modified liposomes, which are designed to avoid interactions with blood proteins and/or cells (sterically stabilized liposomes, long-circulating liposomes) and to actively target specific cells or tissues (targeted liposomes: immunoliposomes). Blood proteins such as opsonins are not usually thought to play an important role in the clearance of such liposomes.