Atherosclerosis is an inflammatory disease of the vessel wall characterized by activation of the innate immune system, with macrophages as the main players, as well as the adaptive immune system, characterized by a Th1-dominant immune response. Cytokines play a major role in the initiation and regulation of inflammation. In recent years, many studies have investigated the role of these molecules in experimental models of atherosclerosis. While some cytokines such as TNF or IFNγ clearly had atherogenic effects, others such as IL-10 were found to be atheroprotective. However, studies investigating the different cytokines in experimental atherosclerosis revealed that the cytokine system is complex with both disease stagedependent and site-specific effects.