Melatonin, the chief secretory product of the pineal gland, is a direct free radical scavenger. In addition to a direct scavenging effect on nitric oxide (NO), its inhibitory effect on nitric oxide synthase (NOS) activity has been also reported. L-arginine is the substrate for both NOS and arginase. It has been suggested that there is a competition between arginase and NOS and that they control each other's level. NO plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis of myoglobinuric acute renal failure (ARF). In this study, the authors aimed to investigate the effect of melatonin on arginase activity, ornithine, and NO levels on the myoglobinuric ARF formed by intramuscular (im) injection of hypertonic glycerol. Forty rats were randomly divided into four groups. Rats in SHAM were given saline, and those in groups ARF, ARF-M5, and ARF-M10 were injected with glycerol (10 mL/kg) im. Concomitant and 24 hours after glycerol injection for the ARF-M5 and ARF-M10 groups, melatonin-5 mg/kg and 10 mg/kg, respectively-was administrated intraperitoneally. Forty-eight hours after the glycerol injection, kidneys of the rats were taken under anesthesia. Arginase activity, ornithine, and NO levels in the kidney tissue were determined. Melatonin had an increasing effect on kidney tissue arginase activities and ornithine levels while decreasing NO concentration. It is possible that besides the direct scavenging effect, the stimulatory effect of melatonin on arginase activity may result in an inhibition of NOS activity and, finally, a decrease in the kidney NO level.