Catecholamines decrease lymphocyte adhesion to cytokine-activated endothelial cells

Brain Behav Immun. 1996 Mar;10(1):55-67. doi: 10.1006/brbi.1996.0005.


Numerous studies have shown that catecholamines can modulate lymphocyte migration. This effect may be mediated in part by modulation of lymphocyte-endothelial cell interactions, which is dependent on adhesion molecules expressed on both of these cells. Our results show that catecholamines decreased T-cell binding to IL-1 activated endothelial cells in vitro. The decrease in adhesion was not mediated by a change in adhesion molecule expression as LFA-1 and VLA-4 expression on T-cells and ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 expression on endothelial cells were not changed by catecholamine stimulation. T-cells flatten and enlarge the area of surface contact as they adhere to endothelial cells. Image analysis of the number of T-cells bound and the amount of cell spreading over several time points suggests that catecholamines alter the kinetics of T-cell-endothelial cell adhesion. These results support the hypothesis that catecholamines can alter lymphocyte-endothelial interactions in vivo, which in turn would affect lymphocyte migration.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Catecholamines / pharmacology*
  • Cell Adhesion / drug effects
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / biosynthesis
  • Cytokines / pharmacology*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / cytology*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / drug effects
  • Female
  • Fluoresceins
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Pregnancy
  • T-Lymphocytes / drug effects*
  • T-Lymphocytes / metabolism
  • Umbilical Veins / cytology
  • Umbilical Veins / drug effects


  • Catecholamines
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Cytokines
  • Fluoresceins
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • 5-chloromethylfluorescein