The effect of the antioxidant α-tocopherol on rat brain protein kinase C activity as a model to study bimodal dose-dependent effect has been investigated. Enzyme activity has been monitored photometrically with a luciferase reporter assay that measures ADP produced by posphorylation. The inhibition of protein kinase C activity by α-tocopherol was found at the concentration range from 10(-3) to 10(-6) M with no effect of ultra low doses of the antioxidant (below. 10(-12) M). The absence of bimodal dose-dependent effect may be associated with the enzyme source.