The common occurrence of fibrin deposits in chronic inflammatory lesions suggests a possible role for thrombin in the mobilization of mononuclear cell infiltrates. For this reason, the effect of thrombin on the binding of mononuclear cells to endothelial cells (EC) was investigated. Incubation of confluent monolayers of human umbilical vein endothelial cells with thrombin markedly enhanced EC adhesiveness for both T lymphocytes and U937 cells (a monocyte-like cell line) in a time- and dose-dependent fashion. This effect was EC specific: 1) treatment of the T cells or the U937 cells with thrombin did not stimulate their adherence to EC, and 2) treatment of human foreskin fibroblasts with thrombin did not stimulate their inherently low adhesiveness for T cells. Fixation of EC monolayers with paraformaldehyde after pre-incubation with thrombin did not affect the increased adhesiveness for T cells. mAb against the LFA-1 antigen (mAb 60.3 (anti-CD18) or mAb TS1/22 (anti-CD11a), which inhibit the binding of T cells to unstimulated EC, failed to block the increased adhesion induced by thrombin, indicating that the increased binding induced by thrombin is similar to that induced by IL-1 and TNF, which showed similar resistance. These results suggest that thrombin may have a role in the extravascular emigration of mononuclear cells from post-capillary venules by virtue of its ability to stimulate the adhesiveness of EC for both lymphocytes and monocytes.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.