The Toll pathway regulates innate immunity in insects and vertebrates. The Drosophila Toll receptor is activated by a processed form of a ligand, Spätzle. Spätzle-processing enzyme (SPE) is the only enzyme identified to date that functions in converting Spätzle to an active form during the immune response. In the present study, Toll activation induced by immune challenge was almost suppressed in spätzle mutant larvae and adults, whereas it was present in SPE mutant larvae challenged with Micrococcus luteus and adults challenged with Bacillus subtilis. Our data suggest that an unidentified protease besides SPE processes Spätzle under conditions of microbial challenge.