Temporomandibular joint pain-related conditions are generally characterized by local inflammation; however, little studies have focused on the role of gonadal hormones in the expression of inflammatory mediators, such as cytokines. Therefore, we asked whether gonadal steroid hormones affect formalin-induced cytokines expression in the rat temporomcandibular joint. The expression of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-á), interleukin (IL)-1â, and cytokine-induced neutrophil chemoattractant (CINC)-1 was significantly higher in males than in diestrus and proestrus females and was decreased by orchiectomy and restored by testosterone replacement. The expression of IL-6 was significantly higher in diestrus and proestrus females than in males, and was decreased by ovariectomy and restored by estradiol or progesterone administration. We conclude that testosterone increases the expression of TNF-á, IL-1â and CINC-1, and estradiol and progesterone increase the expression of IL-6. New clinical approaches based on inhibition of pro-inflammatory mediators are starting to supplant traditional immunosuppressive therapies and gonadal hormones may influence their effectiveness or clinical dosage.