New non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents (NSAIAs) were tested on lens protein-, endotoxin- and interleukin-1-induced ocular inflammation. It was found that most NSAIAs, including REV 5901, mefenamic acid, indomethacin, CK-17 and CK-102, inhibited lens protein-induced inflammation. Endotoxin induced inflammation indirectly through the release of IL-1 which was inhibited by fewer agents, including CK-17, CK-102 and prednisolone. However, the direct effect of IL-1 can only be suppressed by CK-17 and prednisolone. Therefore, CK-17 could become an important NSAIA which acts similarly to corticosteroids yet produces no steroidal side effects. CK-17 was different from most NSAIAs as it affected little, if any, arachidonate metabolism. Most importantly, CK-17 was found to be 2-fold more potent than prednisolone in inhibiting IL-1-induced uveitis, while no side effects were noted at doses tested to date.