To examine the effects of exposure to manganese (Mn) on the cellular and humoral immune system in men, T lymphocyte subpopulations, B (CD19+) lymphocytes, natural killer (NK) cells, and serum immunoglobulins (i.e., IgG, IgA and IgM) together with total T (CD3+) lymphocytes and total lymphocytes were measured in blood samples from 21 welders mainly exposed to Mn fume with blood Mn (BMn) concentrations of 0.6-2.3 (mean 1.4) µg/dl and 21 healthy controls working in the same factory (BMn concentrations: 0.7 to 1.7, mean 1.1 µg/dl). The workers engaged in welding for 6 to 36 (mean 17) yr. All the study subjects were divided into 3 equally sized groups (n=14 for each group) according to BMn concentrations. Numbers of CD8+ T, total T (CD3+), B (CD19+), and total lymphocytes were significantly lower in high-BMn group than those in low-BMn group; the numbers of CD8+ T lymphocytes were significantly lower in moderate-BMn group compared to low-BMn group. After adjusting for age and smoking, significant inverse correlations between BMn concentrations and CD4+CD45RA+ T, CD4+ T, CD8+ T, CD3+ T, and total lymphocytes were found. We conclude that T lymphocytes, especially CD8+ and CD4+CD45RA+ T lymphocytes, as well as CD19+ B lymphocytes are affected by exposure to Mn fume.