We recently demonstrated that clindamycin exhibits activities in acute and chronic models of pain and inflammation. In the present study, we investigated the effects of clindamycin and a clindamycin acetylated derivative (CAD) in models of acute joint inflammation and in a microbiological assay. Joint inflammation was induced in mice by intraarticular (i.a.) injection of zymosan or lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Clindamycin or CAD were administered via the intraperitoneal route 1 h before zymosan or LPS. Paw withdrawal threshold, joint diameter, histological changes, neutrophil recruitment, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) production and phosphorylation of the IκBα and NF-κB/p65 were evaluated. In vitro assays were used to measure the antibacterial activity of clindamycin and CAD and also their effects on zymosan-induced TNF-α production by RAW264.7 macrophages. Clindamycin exhibited activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Salmonella Typhimurium ATCC® strains at much lower concentrations than CAD. Intraarticular injection of zymosan or LPS induced articular hyperalgesia, edema and neutrophil infiltration in the joints. Zymosan also induced histological changes, NF-κB activation and TNF-α production. Responses induced by zymosan and LPS were inhibited by clindamycin (200 and 400 mg/kg) or CAD (436 mg/kg). Both clindamycin and CAD inhibited in vitro TNF-α production by macrophages. In summary, we provided additional insights of the clindamycin immunomodulatory effects, whose mechanism was associated with NF-κB inhibition and reduced TNF-α production. Such effects were extended to a clindamycin derivative with reduced antibacterial activity, indicating that clindamycin derivatives should be investigated as candidates to drugs that could be useful in the management of inflammatory and painful conditions.