Free radical-mediated activation of inflammatory macrophages remains ambiguous with its limitation to study within biological systems. U-937 and HL-60 cell lines serve as a well-defined model system known to differentiate into either macrophages or dendritic cells in response to various chemical stimuli linked with reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. Our present work utilizes phorbol 12-myristate-13-acetate (PMA) as a stimulant, and factors such as concentration and incubation time were considered to achieve optimized differentiation conditions. ROS formation likely hydroxyl radical (HO●) was confirmed by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy combined with confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM). In particular, U-937 cells were utilized further to identify proteins undergoing oxidation by ROS using anti-DMPO (5,5-dimethyl-1-pyrroline N-oxide) antibodies. Additionally, the expression pattern of NADPH Oxidase 4 (NOX4) in relation to induction with PMA was monitored to correlate the pattern of ROS generated. Utilizing macrophages as a model system, findings from the present study provide a valuable source for expanding the knowledge of differentiation and protein expression dynamics.