Growing evidences indicate that epigenetic modification involves in the mechanisms of atherosclerosis, which intersects with oxidative stress pathway. Arsenic is an important environmental contaminant and has been linked to atherosclerosis. However, the exact mechanism is not well understood. In the present study, we analyzed the effect of arsenic on oxidative stress, ABCA1 promoter methylation and cholesterol efflux of THP-1 macrophages. Results showed that arsenic could induce ROS-mediated DNA methyltransferase 1 (DNMT1) transcription and activity up-regulation, causing ABCA1 promoter to be hypermethylated with repressed expression. In addition, arsenic depleted the methyl donor S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) and induced global DNA hypomethylation. Arsenic inhibited cholesterol efflux of THP-1 macrophages, which could be attenuated after pretreatment with NAC or DNMT inhibitor 5-Aza-2'-deoxycytidine, but not with SAM. All of the findings suggest that arsenic inhibit cholesterol efflux of THP-1 macrophages via ROS-mediated ABCA1 hypermethylation.