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Novel azo-bis-ebselen compounds 7 were prepared by reduction of 7-nitro-2-aryl-1,2-benzisoselenazol-3(2H)-ones 3 and 6 with sodium benzenetellurolate, NaTeC6H5, and by reaction of 2-bromo-3-nitrobenzamides with Na2Se2. The X-ray structure of 7b showed that the molecule, due to strong intramolecular secondary Se•••N interactions, is completely planar. Azo-compounds 7 upon further reaction with NaTeC6H5 were reductively cleaved to provide two equivalents of the corresponding aromatic amine. The weak Se•••N bond was not stable enough to survive the reaction conditions and diselenides 8 were isolated after work-up. Whereas azo-bis-ebselens 7 were poor mimics of the glutathione peroxidase (GPx)-enzymes, nitroebselens 3, 6 and 11b and diselenides 8 were 3-6 fold more active than ebselen. Based on 77Se NMR spectroscopy, a catalytic cycle for diselenide 8b, involving aminoebselen 14, was proposed. As assessed by chemiluminescence measurements, the good GPx-mimics could reduce production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in stimulated human mononuclear cells more efficiently than Trolox. No toxic effects of the compounds were seen in MC3T3-cells at 25 μM.