Following elimination of a foreign invader, the immune system must return to its normal quiescent levels. This process requires removal of reactive immune cells when they are no longer needed. We have explored the role of Fas/Fas ligand (FasL) in terminating immunity and demonstrate that mice defective in these proteins have prolonged immune responses. Studies demonstrate that termination of immunity occurs via the interaction of Fas+ lymphoid cells with FasL+ nonlymphoid cells at the site of Ag challenge. Our results also show that FasL is absent in quiescent tissue but is rapidly up-regulated during the local immune reaction. This occurs through the production of IL-10. Thus, FasL and IL-10 work in concert to eliminate inflammatory cells and control the duration of an immune response.