The immunological and physiological influence of seminal plasma on the local uterine environment was investigated by immunohistochemical and flow cytometrical studies on uterine tissues and lymph nodes taken from gilts after mating with a vasectomised boar and from control, unmated gilts. These studies revealed that mating with a vasectomised boar induces an acute transient inflammatory response in the endometrium resulting in marked changes in the presence and distribution of leukocytes and extensive proliferation of the endometrial glands. At the same time there was an increase in CD8L and sIg+ cells and an up-regulation of MHC class II and IL-2 receptor expression in the uterine lymph nodes of mated pigs. This would suggest that seminal plasma deposited in the uterus can activate cells in the local draining lymph nodes. Together, these results demonstrate in utero that pronounced immunological and physiological changes are induced in vivo by seminal plasma.