Although ATP-MgCl2 improves hepatocellular function in a nonheparinized model of trauma-hemorrhage and crystalloid resuscitation, it remains unknown whether the beneficial effects of this agent are due to downregulation of the release of the inflammatory cytokines, tumor necrosis factor (TNF), and interleukin-6 (IL-6) under those conditions. To study this, rats underwent a 5-cm laparotomy (i.e., trauma induced) and were bled to and maintained at a mean arterial pressure of 40 mm Hg until 40% of maximum bleedout volume was returned in the form of Ringer's lactate (RL). The animals were then resuscitated with four times the volume of shed blood with RL over 60 min. ATP-MgCl2 (50 μmoles/kg body weight each) or an equivalent volume of normal saline was infused intravenously for 95 min. This infusion was started during the last 15 min of RL resuscitation. Plasma levels of TNF and IL-6 were measured at 1.5 hr after the completion of resuscitation by cytokine-dependent cellular assays. Hepatic blood flow was determined by in vivo indocyanine green clearance (corrected by hepatic extraction ratio for indocyanine green), radioactive microspheres, and [3H]-galactose clearance techniques. The results indicate that the levels of circulating TNF and IL-6 increased significantly in the hemorrhaged-resuscitated animals. ATP-MgCl2 treatment, however, markedly decreased the synthesis and/or release of these cytokines to levels similar to the sham group. The markedly decreased hepatic blood flow (as determined by three different methods) and hepatic extraction ratio for indocyanine green were also restored by ATP-MgCl2 treatment. Thus, the downregulation of the synthesis and/or release of the inflammatory cytokines, TNF and IL-6, may be one of the mechanisms by which ATP-MgCl2 restores hepatic blood flow following trauma-hemorrhage and crystalloid resuscitation. © 1992.