With the aim of reducing the damage to platelets while effectively removing class I HLA antigens from their surfaces, we developed a new method using acidified chloroquine diphosphate. Platelets were treated with a 0.2 M solution of chloroquine diphosphate (pH 4.0). More than 90% of the platelets remained viable after treatment. While a marked reduction in reactions of acidified chloroquine-treated platelets with multispecific HLA antisera was noted in comparison with phosphate-buffered-saline-(PBS)-treated platelets, reactions with platelet-specific antibodies were preserved. This was demonstrated by immunofluorescence tests and solid-phase and monoclonal antibody immobilization of platelet antigen assays. Aggregation responses, though reduced in comparison with PBS-treated platelets, were still preserved after acidified chloroquine treatment. Ultrastructural analysis did not show any significant difference from PBS-treated platelets. We conclude that treatment of platelets with acidified chloroquine diphosphate is a simple and effective method for removing class I HLA antigens from their surfaces with minimal damage to their structure and function.