We examined the effects of peroxide on the sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum Ca2+ (SERCA) pump in pig coronary artery endothelium and smooth muscle at three organizational levels: Ca2+ transport in permeabilized cells, cytosolic Ca2+ concentration in intact cells, and contractile function of artery rings. We monitored the ATP-dependent, azide-insensitive, oxalate-stimulated45Ca2+uptake by saponin-permeabilized cultured cells. Low concentrations of peroxide inhibited the uptake less effectively in endothelium than in smooth muscle whether we added the peroxide directly to the Ca2+ uptake solution or treated intact cells with peroxide and washed them before the permeabilization. An acylphosphate formation assay confirmed the greater resistance of the SERCA pump in endothelial cells than in smooth muscle cells. Pretreating smooth muscle cells with 300 μM peroxide inhibited (by 77 ± 2%) the cyclopiazonic acid (CPA)-induced increase in cytosolic Ca2+ concentration in a Ca2+-free solution, but it did not affect the endothelial cells. Peroxide pretreatment inhibited the CPA-induced contraction in deendothelialized arteries with a 50% inhibitory concentration of 97 ± 13 μM, but up to 500 μM peroxide did not affect the endothelium-dependent, CPA-induced relaxation. Similarly, 500 μM peroxide inhibited the angiotensin-induced contractions in deendothelialized arteries by 93 ± 2%, but it inhibited the bradykinin-induced, endothelium-dependent relaxation by only 40 ± 13%. The greater resistance of the endothelium to reactive oxygen may be important during ischemia-reperfusion or in the postinfection immune response.