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Circulation. 2002 Aug 13;106(7):820-5.

Soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1, soluble vascular adhesion molecule-1, and the development of symptomatic peripheral arterial disease in men.

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  • 1Center for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass 02115-1204, USA.



Elevated levels of soluble cellular adhesion molecules have been linked to the development of occlusive coronary events in otherwise healthy individuals. It is not certain, however, whether similar relationships exist for the development of early systemic atherosclerosis.


In a prospective, nested case-control study conducted among 14 916 middle-aged men, we evaluated the relationship between baseline levels of soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1), soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1), and the subsequent development of symptomatic peripheral arterial disease (PAD) during a 9-year follow-up period. Median levels of sICAM-1 but not sVCAM-1 were significantly higher at baseline among men who developed PAD than among those who did not (285.2 versus 267.8 ng/mL [P=0.005] for sICAM-1 and 701.0 versus 709.3 ng/mL [P=0.8] for sVCAM-1). In analyses adjusted for age and smoking, the odds ratio in the highest compared with the lowest quartile of sICAM-1 was 3.9 (95% CI 1.7 to 8.6; P(trend)=0.001). After additional adjustment for lipid and nonlipid risk factors, including C-reactive protein, elevated sICAM-1 remained significantly associated with subsequent PAD (OR 3.5, 95% CI 1.4 to 8.5, P(trend)=0.008). Whereas a monotonic dose-response relationship was evident over the full spectrum of ICAM-1 levels, elevated sVCAM-1 was not associated with future PAD in either age- and smoking-adjusted or fully adjusted models.


Elevated levels of sICAM-1 are independently associated with the development of accelerated atherosclerosis among otherwise healthy men even in the absence of acute coronary occlusion.

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