Background and Objective: Mucosal inflammatory responses are orchestrated largely by pro-inflammatory chemokines. The chemokine granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 (CXCL6) is involved in neutrophil recruitment and migration. Previous studies have shown that granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 is up-regulated during mucosal inflammation (e.g. in inflammatory bowel disease), similarly to the functionally and structurally related chemokine interleukin-8. Nevertheless, unlike interleukin-8, a role of granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 in gingival inflammation has not been yet demonstrated. In this study we aimed to evaluate the expression of the chemokine granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 in clinically healthy vs. diseased gingival tissues and to explore possible correlations with clinical and microbiological markers of periodontitis. Material and Methods: Gene expression in 184 'diseased' and 63 'healthy' gingival tissue specimens from 90 patients with periodontitis was analyzed using Affymetrix U133Plus2.0 arrays. The expression of granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 was further confirmed by real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, western blotting and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, while the localization of granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 in gingival tissues was analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Plaque samples from the adjacent periodontal pockets were collected and evaluated for 11 species of periodontal bacteria using checkerboard DNA-DNA hybridizations. Results: Among all known chemokines, GCP-2 expression was the most up-regulated (3.8-fold, p < 1.1 × 10 -16), in 'diseased' vs. 'healthy' tissue as compared to a 2.6-fold increased expression of interleukin-8 mRNA (p < 1.2 × 10 -15). Increased expression of granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 correlated with higher levels of 'red' and 'orange' complex pathogens and with increased probing depth, but not with attachment loss. Immunohistochemistry showed that granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 was expressed in gingival vascular endothelium. Conclusion: The level of expression of granulocyte chemotactic protein 2 correlates with the severity of periodontitis and appears to act as a hitherto unrecognized functional adjunct to interleukin-8 in diseased gingival tissues.