Serum lysozyme levels were determined on 670 consecutive subjects seen for regularly scheduled clinic examinations of the Adult Health Study in Hiroshima. Serum lysozyme levels were found to vary significantly with the absolute peripheral granulocyte count, age, sex, and month of study. A high level of correlation also was noted between serum lysozyme and diabetes mellitus. This was at least in part attributable to greater average age in patients with diabetes. Suggestive relationship was established between serum lysozyme levels, respiratory diseases, and tuberculosis. These changes are believed to reflect active inflammation with excessive destruction of granulocytes and parenchymal tissues in those patients with the more acute processes. No relationship was found between serum lysozyme and previous exposure to ionizing radiation. These studies indicate that the serum lysozyme level may be useful in the study of the kinetics of leukopoiesis, the aging process, and in the detection of subtle inflammatory processes. 21 references, 5 tables.