The role of P-selectin in T-lymphocyte accumulation and injury was studied in delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) responses in the skin and glomeruli of rats. Sprague Dawley rats were sensitized to sheep globulin and challenged 5 days later in the skin by subcutaneous injection and simultaneously in glomeruli by intravenous injection of a subnephritogenic dose of sheep anti-rat glomerular basement membrane globulin. This resulted in cutaneous and glomerular T lymphocyte-dependent macrophage influx and injury characteristic of DTH. Up-regulation of P-selectin expression on endothelial cells was observed in both inflammatory lesions. Treatment of rats with anti-CD5 antibody immediately prior to antigen challenge prevented the development of injury as assessed by measurement of proteinuria and skin swelling, as well as local T cell and macrophage accumulation in the glomerulus and in the skin, but did not block up-regulation endothelial cell P-selectin. Treatment with anti-CD4 antibody produced similar results. Blocking P-selectin in vivo with a functionally inhibitory antibody prevented development of proteinuria and skin swelling following antigen challenge. Local accumulation of T cells and macrophages was markedly attenuated in glomeruli and the skin and up-regulation of endothelial cell P-selectin was prevented. These data demonstrate that P-selectin is locally up-regulated on endothelial cells in T cell-dependent glomerular and cutaneous inflammation and suggests a pivotal functional role for P-selectin in local T cell recruitment and subsequent injury in DTH.