An inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate 3-kinase purified from human platelets contains two major components, 53 and 36 kDa polypeptides. Each polypeptide expresses Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent enzymatic activity and is phosphorylated by an unidentified protein kinase in the enzyme preparation. The 36-kDa polypeptide may be further phosphorylated on serine residues by protein kinase C to a stoichiometry of 0.8 mole phosphate per mole of protein. Phosphorylation of the 36-kDa component is correlated with inhibition of the kinase activity; the inhibitory effect is dependent upon Ca2+ and phosphatidylserine/diolein and may be blocked by a selective peptide inhibitor of protein kinase C. Phosphorylation by protein kinase C decreases the Vmax of the enzyme from 160 to 28 nmol/mg/min; the Km (0.76 microM) is not altered. These data suggest that protein kinase C may negatively regulate inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate 3-kinase activity in the human platelet.