IL-5 production in vivo plays a unique role in the production, activation, and localization of eosinophils in a variety of allergic conditions. The current paradigm suggests that allergen-specific Th2 cells are the main source for the IL-5 production. The experiments outlined in this work, however, suggest that in vivo production of IL-5 by NK cells can separately influence eosinophil-associated inflammatory responses. Specifically, a mouse model of allergic inflammation was used in which C57BL/6 mice were immunized and challenged with a short ragweed Ag extract, known to induce a selective eosinophilia within the peritoneal cavity. Peritoneal lavage fluids from these mice also contained increased numbers of T cells and NK cells, as well as significantly elevated levels of IL-4, IL-5, and IFN-gamma. Flow-cytometric analysis of cytokine-producing cells in peritoneal lavage fluid revealed increased numbers of IL-5-producing cells in both T cell and NK cell populations following allergen exposure. Depletion of NK cells by treatment with NK1.1 Abs selectively reduced the number of infiltrating eosinophils by more than 50%. Moreover, the inhibition of the infiltration of eosinophils was accompanied by a complete loss of IL-5-producing NK cells and significantly reduced levels of peritoneal lavage fluid IL-5, whereas the number of IL-5-producing T cells was not affected. Thus, the results presented in this study provide clear evidence for a novel immunoregulatory function of NK cells in vivo, promoting allergen-induced eosinophilic inflammatory responses by the production of IL-5.