Estradiol down-regulates MCP-1 expression in human coronary artery endothelial cells

Fertil Steril. 2002 Mar;77(3):542-7. doi: 10.1016/s0015-0282(01)03223-x.


Objective: To determine whether estrogen down-regulates MCP-1 in vascular endothelial cells.

Design: A prospective comparative study.

Setting: Academic research environment.

Patient(s): Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (n = 3) and human coronary artery endothelial cells (n = 3) obtained from females.

Intervention(s): Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) and human coronary artery endothelial cells (HCAEC) were grown to preconfluence. Then, they were treated with various concentrations of estradiol (10(-11) M to 10(-7) M) as well as raloxifene (10(-7) M) and tamoxifen (10(-7) M). MCP-1 in culture media was quantified using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Cellular ribonucleic acid (RNA) was extracted and Northern blots were hybridized with an oligonucleotide probe complementary to a specific sequence of MCP-1 mRNA.

Main outcome measure(s): MCP-1 protein and mRNA.

Result(s): Estrogen treatment did not change MCP-1 expression in HUVEC. On the other hand, in HCAEC, estradiol induced a 30% decrease in mRNA expression and resulted in dose-dependent inhibition of MCP-1 production as detected by ELISA. Raloxifene and tamoxifen also resulted in inhibition of MCP-1 mRNA and protein expression.

Conclusion(s): Our findings suggest that one of the mechanisms by which estrogen down-regulates atherosclerosis is by suppressing vascular MCP-1 expression, resulting in decreased macrophage recruitment.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Blotting, Northern
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Chemokine CCL2 / biosynthesis*
  • Chemokine CCL2 / genetics
  • Coronary Vessels / drug effects
  • Coronary Vessels / metabolism
  • Coronary Vessels / physiology
  • Down-Regulation / drug effects
  • Endothelium, Vascular / drug effects*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / metabolism*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiology
  • Estradiol / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • RNA, Messenger / biosynthesis
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Raloxifene Hydrochloride / pharmacology
  • Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators / pharmacology
  • Tamoxifen / pharmacology
  • Umbilical Veins / drug effects
  • Umbilical Veins / metabolism
  • Umbilical Veins / physiology


  • Chemokine CCL2
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators
  • Tamoxifen
  • Raloxifene Hydrochloride
  • Estradiol