The prevalence rate of allergic rhinitis caused by pollen has strikingly increased in Japan in the last three decades. The number of diesel cars in use has also rapidly increased in the country. This fact urged us to study the effects of particulates emitted from diesel cars on the production of IgE antibody. The primary IgE antibody responses in mice immunized with intraperitoneal injection of ovalbumin (OA) mixed with diesel-exhaust particulates (DEP) were higher than those in the animals immunized with OA alone. This effect of DEP on the production of IgE antibody in mice was also demonstrated when mice were immunized with repeated injections of dinitrophenylated-OA. In addition, persistent IgE-antibody response to major allergen of Japanese cedar pollen (JCPA), a most common pollen causing allergic rhinitis in Japan, was observed in mice immunized with JCPA mixed with DEP but not in the animals immunized with JCPA alone. The results do indicate that the adjuvant activity of DEP can not be excluded as a possible cause of the associated change in the number of diesel cars and allergic rhinitis caused by pollen in Japan.