Resveratrol (3,4',5-trihydroxystilbene), a compound found in many plants, has been shown to prevent coronary heart diseases and to exert a variety of antiinflammatory and anticancerogenic effects. It is effective in lowering the level of serum lipids and in inhibiting platelet aggregation. We evaluated the effect of trans-resveratrol on the production of free radicals in pig blood platelets and showed that resveratrol inhibited the production of different reactive oxygen species (O2*-, H2O2, singlet oxygen and organic radicals) measured by the luminol-dependent chemiluminescence in resting platelets (P < 0.05). Resveratrol inhibited also the generation of radicals in platelets activated by thrombin (P < 0.05). Treatment of platelets with resveratrol at concentrations of 6.25 and 12.5 microg/ml caused a statistically insignificant increase in the production of O2*- in these cells, as measured by reduction of cytochrome c; however, at higher doses (25, 50 and 100 microg/ml) resveratrol distinctly reduced the generation of O2*- in platelets (P < 0.05). We suggest that free radicals play an important role in the reduced reactivity of blood platelets induced by resveratrol.