[en] The proteolytic activity of trypsin releases the dye Remazol Brilliant Blue from its high molecular weight substrate, the skin powder (Hide Powder Azure, Sigma), with an increase in absorbance at 595 nm. Active alpha(2)- macroglobulin (80 mug/ml) totally inhibits the proteolytic activity of trypsin (14 mug/ml) by trapping this protease. But after a 20 min incubation of alpha(2)-macroglobulin at 37 degrees C with 2 x 10(6) human polymorphonuclear leukocytes activated by N-formyl-L-methionyl-L-leucyl-L-phenylalanine (10(-7) M) and cytochalasin B (10(-8) M), 100% of trypsin activity was recovered, indicating a total inactivation of alpha(2)-macroglobuHn. Incubation with granulocyte myeloperoxidase also inactivates alpha(2)-macroglobulin. Hypochlorous acid, a by-product of myeloperoxidase activity, at a concentration of 10(-7) M also inactivates alpha(2)-macroglobulin, which indicates that an important cause of alpha(2)-macroglobulin inactivation by activated polymorphonuclear leukocytes could be the activity of myeloperoxidase.