We examined the effects of tranilast, an anti-allergic agent, on hypersensitive inflammation and on morphology and functions of fibroblasts. In vivo, tranilast suppressed the content of collagen in granulation tissue of hypersensitive granulomatous inflammation induced by methylated bovine serum albumin (m-BSA) in rats. In culture, tranilast inhibited the TGF-beta-independent inflammatory exudate-induced stimulation of morphological changes of fibroblasts to myofibroblast-like cells and their proliferation. Collagen gel contraction by myofibroblast-like cells and fibroblasts was also inhibited by tranilast. Flow cytometric analysis revealed that tranilast suspended the cell cycle of fibroblasts at the G0/G1 phase. These results suggest that tranilast modulates the fibrosis and contraction of granulation tissue by inhibiting the growth of myofibroblast-like cells and fibroblasts.