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Weber, Christian; Erl, Wolfgang; Weber, Kim S.C.; Weber, Peter C. (1999): Effects of oxidized low density lipoprotein, lipid mediators and statins on vascular cell interactions. In: Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine, Vol. 37, No. 3: pp. 243-251


The integrin heterodimer CD11b/CD18 (alpha M beta 2, Mac-1, CR3) expressed on monocytes or polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN) is a receptor for iC3b, fibrinogen, heparin, and for intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM)-1 on endothelium, crucially contributing to vascular cell interactions in inflammation and atherosclerosis. In this report, we summarize our findings on the effects of lipid mediators and lipid-lowering drugs. Exposure of endothelial cells to oxidized low density lipoprotein (oxLDL) induces upregulation of ICAM-1 and increases adhesion of monocytic cells expressing Mac-1. Inhibition experiments show that monocytes use distinct ligands, i.e. ICAM-1 and heparan sulfate proteoglycans for adhesion to oxLDL-treated endothelium. An albumin-transferable oxLDL activity is inhibited by the antioxidant pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC), while 8-epi-prostaglandin F2 alpha (8-epi-PGF2 alpha) or lysophosphatidylcholine had no effect, implicating yet unidentified radicals. Sequential adhesive! and signaling events lead to the firm adhesion of rolling PMN on activated and adherent platelets, which may occupy areas of endothelial denudation. Shear resistant arrest of PMN on thrombin-stimulated platelets in flow conditions requires distinct regions of Mac-1, involving its interactions with fibrinogen bound to platelet alpha llb beta 3, and with other platelet ligands. Both arrest and adhesion strengthening under flow are stimulated by platelet-activating factor and leukotriene B4, but not by the chemokine receptor CXCR2. We tested whether Mac-1-dependent monocyte adhesiveness is affected by inhibitors of hydroxy-methylglutaryl-Coenzyme A reductase (statins) which improve morbidity and survival of patients with coronary heart disease. As compared to controls, adhesion of isolated monocytes to endothelium ex vivo was increased in patients with hypercholesterolemia. Treatment with statins decreased total and low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol plasma levels, surface expression of Mac-1, and resulted in a dramatic reduction of Mac,mediated monocyte adhesion to endothelium. The inhibition of monocyte adhesion was reversed by mevalonate but not LDL in vitro,indicating that isoprenoid precursors are crucial for adhesiveness of Mac-1. Such effects may crucially contribute to the clinical benefit of statins, independent of cholesterol-lowering, and may represent a paradigm for novel, anti-inflammatory mechanisms of action by this class of drugs.