Upland cotton is sensitive to 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D), and the identification of potentially 2,4-D tolerant cotton chromosome substitution (CS) lines and understanding tolerance mechanisms provide a significant step into the development and genetic improvement of upland cotton to reduce yield loss caused by 2,4-D herbicide effects including the drifts. Experiments were conducted to understand the possible mechanism of herbicide tolerance in CS-T04-15, CS-T07, and CS-B15sh, 2,4-D herbicide-tolerant cotton CS lines compared with TM-1, the 2,4-D herbicide susceptible recurrent parent of the CS line as control, using [14C]2,4-D. Percent absorption rate and translocation patterns of the 14C-labeled herbicide application at 5.17 kBq at 6 to 48 hours after treatment (HAT) were determined. The tolerant cotton CS lines showed 15-19% [14C]2,4-D uptake while TM-1 exhibited a reduced uptake of only 1.4% [14C]2,4-D at 24 HAT. Distribution of the absorbed [14C]2,4-D showed that 2-5% was translocated outside the treated leaf. In TM-1, 77% of the herbicide was translocated above and below the treated leaf, contrasting with the reduced translocation of 14C-labeled herbicide observed in the tolerant CS lines. Interestingly, CS-T04-15 showed a restricted movement of 14C below the treated leaf at 6 to 48 HAT, suggesting a novel mechanism of herbicide tolerance. This finding is the first report on upland cotton demonstrating a complex differential uptake and translocation associated with herbicide tolerance for [14C]2,4-D in cotton CS lines.