Lipoprotein lipase (LPL) activity was measured in the media of cultured mouse peritoneal macrophages that were isolated after the intraperitoneal injection of inflammatory agents in order to yield a variety of states of activation. Fully activated macrophages obtained from Corynebacterium parvum-injected mice secreted very low levels of LPL when compared to unstimulated macrophages, while inflammatory and primed macrophages had increased LPL secretion. When inflammatory macrophages were incubated with conditioned medium obtained from fully activated macrophages, LPL secretion decreased in a time- and dose-dependent fashion. The factor(s) secreted by fully activated macrophages that inhibited LPL secretion was shown to be thermolabile and distinct from tumor necrosis factor. These results demonstrate that activation dramatically alters macrophage LPL secretion.