Collagen-induced arthritis was evoked by an injection of lipopolysaccharide and anti-type II collagen antibody in mice. In parallel with the onset of arthritis, granulocytes with large light scatter and a Mac-1(+) Gr-1(+) phenotype expanded in the joints of these mice. Lymphocytes with a CD3(-) B220(+) phenotype (i.e. B220(+) B cells) were the major population among lymphocyte subsets in the joints, irrespective of disease. To determine the origin of these leucocyte populations in the joints and other organs, parabiotic experiments using CBF(1)Ly5.1 and CBF(1)Ly5.2 mice were conducted in mice with and without collagen-induced arthritis. As expected, leucocyte populations in the liver and spleen became a half-and-half mixture of their own cells and partner cells (e.g. approximately 45% of Ly5.1(+) cells in Ly5.2(+) partner mice). However, such a mixture was extremely delayed in the joints and bone marrow, even in mice with arthritis. These results suggest that, because circulatory blood is not exchanged in the joints, granulocytes and other lymphocytes are generated in situ in the inflamed joints of mice with collagen-induced arthritis or are possibly supplied by the bone marrow. It is of interest that granulocytes in the joints expanded, even without a supply from another site, namely, the synovium.