Intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and HLA-DR antigens in herpes keratitis

Ophthalmology. 1992 Sep;99(9):1400-7. doi: 10.1016/s0161-6420(92)31801-9.


Purpose: Intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) is a cell surface glycoprotein that binds leukocyte function antigen-1 receptor on leukocytes, thereby regulating leukocyte trafficking and function at sites of inflammation. Recently, the authors demonstrated ICAM-1 in human corneas exposed to proinflammatory cytokines, but ICAM-1 has not been reported in corneal disease. In this study, the presence of ICAM-1 in human disciform herpes simplex virus (HSV) keratitis is investigated.

Methods: Immunohistochemistry was performed for ICAM-1 on 4 keratoplasty specimens from patients with corneal scarring due to disciform HSV keratitis and 1 corneoscleral biopsy of a patient with active HSV keratoscleritis using specific, characterized monoclonal antibody to ICAM-1. Negative immunohistochemical controls included monoclonal antibodies to other vascular endothelial adhesion molecules or mouse serum.

Results: All 5 specimens demonstrated intense ICAM-1 immunoreactivity of keratinocytes, stromal keratocytes, and endothelial cells, predominantly in regions of leukocytic infiltration. Diffuse, intense HLA-DR positivity was detected throughout the corneas. The specimens failed to react with control antibodies.

Conclusion: These results are the first to demonstrate ICAM-1 in human corneal disease and suggest important roles for ICAM-1 and HLA-DR co-expression in generating immune responses in HSV keratitis. Increased ICAM-1 expression in regions of leukocytic infiltration may regulate leukocyte-corneal cell binding, thereby promoting immune responses and damage by activated leukocytes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antigens, CD / analysis
  • Antigens, Viral / analysis*
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / analysis*
  • Corneal Stroma / immunology
  • Eye Infections, Viral / immunology*
  • Eye Infections, Viral / pathology
  • Female
  • HLA-DR Antigens / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1
  • Keratitis, Herpetic / immunology*
  • Keratitis, Herpetic / pathology
  • Keratoplasty, Penetrating
  • Male
  • Middle Aged


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antigens, CD
  • Antigens, Viral
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • HLA-DR Antigens
  • Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1