OBJECTIVE To determine the effect of fetal bovine serum (FBS) and heat-inactivated FBS (HI-FBS) on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)- and zymosan-induced procoagulant activity of equine and canine mononuclear cells. SAMPLE POPULATION Mononuclear cells from 18 horses and 3 dogs. PROCEDURES Cells were incubated with various concentrations of FBS, HI-FBS, LPS, zymosan, polymyxin B, and anti-LPS-binding protein monoclonal antibody or combinations of these constituents. A 1 stage recalcification assay was used to determine procoagulant activity. RESULTS Addition of FBS to media significantly increased procoagulant activity; equine and canine cells were stimulated by 1% and 10% FBS, respectively. Coincubation of cells with FBS and polymyxin B did not reduce this effect, suggesting that the response was not attributable to LPS contamination. Addition of HI-FBS to media did not stimulate procoagulant activity of equine or canine cells, and the sensitivity of the equine cells to LPS was significantly increased by HI-FBS. This increased LPS sensitivity was reduced 40% with monoclonal antibody directed against human recombinant LPS-binding protein. Increasing concentrations of HIFBS significantly increased LPS- and zymosan-induced procoagulant activity of canine cells. CONCLUSION AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Procoagulant activity production in equine and canine mononuclear cells was significantly increased by addition of FBS, whereas heat inactivation of FBS eliminated this effect. Heat inactivation did not eliminate the function of serum proteins involved in enhancement of LPS and zymosan-induced procoagulant activity. Results suggest that HI-FBS can be used as a source of serum proteins that increase the sensitivity of mononuclear cells to bacterial and yeast cell wall components.