Pertussis toxin, and also cholera toxin are capable of inhibiting the effects of LPS in the elicitation of the generalized Schwartzman reaction. This is a potentially lethal generalized thrombo-haemorrhagic hypersensitivity and inflammatory-type response that occurs after two consecutive injections of LPS. The two exotoxins furnish significant protection against the lethal outcome of this reaction. It is known that the acute haematological and haemodynamic changes are accompanied by alterations in the levels of various endogenous mediators: glucocorticoid hormones, prostaglandins, arachidonic acid metabolites, cytokines and proteases. In vitro effects of LPS on murine leukocyte cell lines can be antagonized by pertussis toxin, implicating a Gi-like regulatory protein in the mediation of these effects. Experiments designed to study the involvement of particular second messenger systems (cAMP and phosphatidylinositol) used by LPS in vivo, revealed that the protective effects conferred by these exotoxins are associated with the antagonization of alterations caused by LPS. No correlation was found between the levels of IL-6 and the mortality rate in this experimental mouse model. The results indicate that G proteins play a role in the generation of the Schwartzman reaction and open a new approach for pharmacological intervention in endotoxemia and in clinical settings with Gram-negative sepsis.