The influence of an exercise training program and age on inflammatory cytokine production and CD14+cell-surface expression of toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) and toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) was examined in 60 younger and older subjects. Subjects were assigned to: young physically active (YPA, n = 15; 25.2 +/- 5.0 years), young physically inactive (YPI, n = 14; 24.9 +/- 4.7 years), older physically active (OPA, n = 14; 71.2 +/- 4.4 years) or older physically inactive (OPI, n = 17; 71.0 +/- 4.3 years) groups. YPI and OPI completed 12 weeks (3 days/week) of endurance (20 min) and resistance exercise (eight exercises, two sets). YPA and OPA groups were instructed to continue their normal activity for 12 weeks. Blood was collected at rest, before and after the 12-week training and control period. A whole blood method was used to determine lipopolysaccharide-(LPS) and peptidoglycan-(PGN) stimulated IL-6, IL-1beta, and TNF-alpha production with supernatants analyzed using ELISA. CD14+ cell-surface expression of TLR2 and TLR4 were measured using flow cytometry. Training increased estimated VO(2max) by 10.4% and increased strength by an average of 38.1%. YPI and OPI had a post-training reduction in LPS-stimulated IL-6 production (P < .01), but LPS-stimulated IL-1beta and TNF-alpha and PGN-stimulated cytokines were not changed. CD14+ cell TLR4 was significantly reduced (P < .05) in YPI and OPI groups after training, but TLR2 was not significantly changed. An exercise training program reduced LPS-stimulated IL-6, concomitant with lower TLR4. These results provide further support for a training- or physical activity-induced lowering of TLR4 and inflammation.