To establish baseline information on neopterin concentrations in livestock, companion and laboratory animals and identify the factors that may influence these concentrations, blood samples were taken from normal dairy cattle, horses, llamas, dogs, cats and rats of varying ages and sexes. In addition, neopterin concentrations in normal, adult equines were compared with those found in racing Thoroughbreds. There were no differences due to sex, sexual maturity, pregnancy, castration, or age. For all ages and sexes combined, mean neopterin concentrations were significantly lower in llamas (2.27+/-0.33 nmol litre(-1)) and rats (2.13+/-0.21 nmol litre(-1)) when compared with the other species tested. Racing Thoroughbreds demonstrated higher neopterin values than adult equines not in training (3.54+/-0.64 vs 3.13+/-1.02 nmol litre(-1)).