Differentiating cells undergo programmed alterations in their patterns of gene expression, which are often regulated by structural changes in chromatin. Here we demonstrate that T cell differentiation results in long-range changes in the chromatin structure of effector cytokine genes, which persist in resting Th1 and Th2 cells in the absence of further stimulation. Differentiation of naive T helper cells into mature Th2 cells is associated with chromatin remodeling of the IL-4 and IL-13 genes, whereas differentiation into Th1 cells evokes remodeling of the IFNgamma but not IL-4 or IL-13 genes. IL-4 locus remodeling is accompanied by demethylation and requires both antigen stimulation and STAT6 activation. We propose that chromatin remodeling of cytokine gene loci is functionally associated with productive T cell differentiation and may explain the coordinate regulation of Th2 cytokine genes.