Send to

Choose Destination
Int J Cardiol. 2006 Aug 10;111(2):302-8. Epub 2005 Dec 1.

Inter-relationships of indices of endothelial damage/dysfunction [circulating endothelial cells, von Willebrand factor and flow-mediated dilatation] to tissue factor and interleukin-6 in acute coronary syndromes.

Author information

Haemostasis Thrombosis and Vascular Biology Unit, University Department of Medicine, City Hospital, Birmingham B18 7QH, UK.



Increased circulating endothelial cells (CECs, reflecting endothelial damage) in acute coronary syndromes (ACS) has been reported. However, the inter-relationships of indices of endothelial damage/injury with development of vascular (dys)function, plasma levels of tissue factor (TF, an index of coagulation) and interleukin-6 (IL-6, a pro-inflammatory cytokine) have not been investigated in ACS. We hypothesized that increased CECs can be related to impaired flow-mediated vasodilatation (FMD, an index of endothelial dysfunction) and elevated plasma von Willebrand factor (vWf, also marking endothelial damage/dysfunction), TF and IL-6 in patients with ACS.


We studied 120 patients with ACS (80 acute myocardial infarction and 40 unstable angina; 86 male, age 65+/-12 years) and 40 matched patients with stable CAD and 40 healthy controls (HC) in a cross-sectional analysis. Plasma vWf, TF and IL-6 levels were measured by ELISA. CECs were quantified using epifluorescence microscope after immunomagnetic separation with CD146. Brachial artery FMD was assessed in a subset of 39 ACS patients.


ACS patients had significantly higher CECs, vWf, TF and IL-6 levels, but lower FMD, when compared to stable CAD and HC (all p<0.001) and all were inter-correlated significantly. In ACS, CECs was strongly correlated with FMD (r=-0.64, p<0.001) and TF (r=0.7, p<0.001). In stable CAD, significant correlations were again found between many indices, but on multivariate analysis, IL-6 and vWf were both independently related to FMD.


Increased CECs in ACS patients are closely associated with endothelial damage/dysfunction (vWf and FMD), coagulation (TF) and inflammation (IL-6). These inter-relationships support the concept of a central role of endothelial damage/injury in the activation of vascular and coagulation abnormalities in ACS.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center