It has been demonstrated that interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) and interleukin-10 (IL-10) have various reverse effects on macrophages; however, the molecular mechanism of this difference has not been fully understood. In this study, we analyzed the binding activity of IL-10- and IFN-gamma-activated STAT molecules to two kinds of GAS-motif sequences. IL-10-activated STAT1 could bind to the GAS-motif sequence in the promoter region of the Fcgamma receptor, but not to that in the promoter region of the COX-2 gene, whereas IFN-gamma-activated STAT1 and STAT5 could bind to both sequences. IL-10 inhibited IFN-gamma-induced STAT activation without newly synthesized protein. We further demonstrated that aspirin, but not dexamethasone, suppressed IFN-gamma-induced STAT activation. Taken together, these results suggest that IL-10-activated STAT1 has a specificity in binding to the GAS-motif sequences, whereas IFN-gamma-activated STAT1 and STAT5 have a broader spectrum in binding to the GAS-motif sequences. This may explain the difference between IL-10 and IFN-gamma in biological activity, and the inhibitory effect of IL-10 on IFN-gamma activities.