We demonstrate that adrenomedullin (AM) is produced and secreted from cultured murine monocyte/macrophage cell line (RAW 264.7) as well as mouse peritoneal macrophage. Immunoreactive (IR) AM secreted from RAW 264.7 cells was chromatographically identified to be native AM. To elucidate the regulation mechanism of AM production in macrophage, we examined the effects of various substances inducing differentiation or activation of monocyte/macrophage. Phorbol ester (TPA), retinoic acid (RA), lipopolysaccharide (LPS), and interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) increased AM production 1.5-7-fold in RAW 264.7 cells in a dose- as well as time-dependent manner. By LPS stimulation, the AM mRNA level in RAW 264.7 cells was augmented up to 7-fold after 14 h incubation. RA exerted a synergistic effect when administered with TPA, LPS, or IFN-gamma, whereas IFN-gamma completely suppressed AM production in RAW 264.7 cells stimulated with LPS. Dexamethasone, hydrocortisone, estradiol, and transforming growth factor-beta dose-dependently suppressed AM production in RAW 264.7 cells. AM production was also investigated in mouse peritoneal macrophage. Primary mouse macrophage secreted IR-AM at a rate similar to that of RAW 264.7 cells, and its production was enhanced 9-fold by LPS stimulation. AM was found to increase basal secretion of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) from RAW 264.7 cells, whereas AM suppressed the secretion of TNF-alpha and interleukin-6 from that stimulated with LPS. Thus, macrophage should be recognized as one of the major sources of AM circulating in the blood. Especially in cases of sepsis and inflammation, AM production in macrophage is augmented, and the secreted AM is deduced to function as a modulator of cytokine production.