Receptor-mediated production of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (InsP(3)) initiates Ca(2+) release and is responsible for cytosolic Ca(2+) oscillations. InsP(3) oscillations have also been observed in some cells. One of the enzymes controlling InsP(3) catabolism, the InsP(3) 3-kinase, is stimulated by Ca(2+); this regulation is presumably part of the reason for InsP(3) oscillations that have been observed in some cells. Here, we investigate the possible role of Ca(2+)-activated InsP(3) catabolism on the characteristics of the InsP(3)-induced Ca(2+) oscillations. Numerical simulations show that if it is assumed that the Ca(2+)-independent InsP(3) catabolism is predominant, Ca(2+) oscillations remain qualitatively unchanged although the relative amplitude of the oscillations in InsP(3) concentrations becomes minimal. We tested this prediction in hepatocytes by masking the Ca(2+)-dependent InsP(3) catabolism by 3-kinase through the injection of massive amounts of InsP(3) 5-phosphatase, which is not stimulated by Ca(2+). We find that in such injected hepatocytes, Ca(2+) oscillations generated by modest agonist levels are suppressed, presumably because of the decreased dose in InsP(3), but that at higher doses of agonist, oscillations reappear, with characteristics similar to those of untreated cells at low agonist doses. Altogether, these results suggest that oscillations in InsP(3) concentration due to Ca(2+)-stimulated InsP(3) catabolism do not play a major role for the oscillations in Ca(2+) concentration.