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J Clin Invest. 1995 Apr;95(4):1756-65.

Prevention of in vitro neutrophil-endothelial attachment through shedding of L-selectin by nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs.

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Section of Rheumatology, Hospital de la Princesa, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain.


The activation of the endothelial cells by extravascular stimuli is the key event in the extravasation of circulating leukocytes to target tissues. L-selectin, a member of the selectin family, is constitutively expressed by white cells, and is the molecule involved in the initial binding of leukocytes to activated endothelium. After activation, leukocytes rapidly release L-selectin from the cell surface, suggesting that the functional activity of this molecule is controlled in large part by its appearance and disappearance from cell surface. We have studied in a neutrophil-activated endothelial cell binding assay, the effect of different antiinflammatory drugs (steroidal and nonsteroidal) in the L-selectin-mediated interaction of neutrophils with activated endothelial cells. Some nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as indomethacin, diclofenac, ketoprofen, and aspirin, but not steroids, strongly inhibited the neutrophil-endothelial cell attachment. Furthermore, we also investigated the underlying mechanism of this functional effect. The expression of L-selectin on the neutrophil surface rapidly decreased in the presence of different NSAIDs, in a dose- and time-dependent manner, whereas no changes in the expression of other adhesion molecules such as CD11a, CD11b, CD31, or ICAM-3 (CD50) were observed. Interestingly, studies in vivo on healthy volunteers treated with physiological doses of indomethacin showed a significant decrease of L-selectin neutrophil expression. Only diclofenac induced an upregulation of CD11b expression, suggesting an activating effect on neutrophils. No enzyme release was observed upon treatment of neutrophils with different NSAIDs, indicating a lack of degranulatory activity of NSAIDs, with the exception of diclofenac. The downregulation of L-selectin expression was due to the rapid cleavage and shedding of the membrane L-selectin, as determined by both immunoprecipitation from 125I-labeled neutrophils, and quantitative estimation in cell-free supernatants. These results suggest that NSAIDs exert a specific action on adhesion receptor expression in neutrophils, which might account, at least in part, for the antiinflammatory activities of NSAIDs.

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