NADPH oxidase and lipid raft-associated redox signaling are required for PCB153-induced upregulation of cell adhesion molecules in human brain endothelial cells

Sung Yong Eum, Ibolya Andras, Bernhard Hennig, Michal Toborek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Scopus citations


Exposure to persistent organic pollutants, such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), can lead to chronic inflammation and the development of vascular diseases. Because cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) of the cerebrovascular endothelium regulate infiltration of inflammatory cells into the brain, we have explored the molecular mechanisms by which ortho-substituted polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), such as PCB153, can upregulate CAMs in brain endothelial cells. Exposure to PCB153 increased expression of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1), as well as elevated adhesion of leukocytes to brain endothelial cells. These effects were impeded by inhibitors of EGFR, JAKs, or Src activity. In addition, pharmacological inhibition of NADPH oxidase or disruption of lipid rafts by cholesterol depleting agents blocked PCB153-induced phosphorylation of JAK and Src kinases and upregulation of CAMs. In contrast, silencing of caveolin-1 by siRNA interference did not affect upregulation of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 in brain endothelial cells stimulated by PCB153. Results of the present study indicate that lipid raft-dependent NADPH oxidase/JAK/EGFR signaling mechanisms regulate the expression of CAMs in brain endothelial cells and adhesion of leukocytes to endothelial monolayers. Due to its role in leukocyte infiltration, induction of CAMs may contribute to PCB-induced cerebrovascular disorders and neurotoxic effects in the CNS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-305
Number of pages7
JournalToxicology and Applied Pharmacology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 15 2009



  • Brain endothelium
  • Cell adhesion molecules
  • Lipid rafts
  • NADPH oxidase
  • Polychlorinated biphenyls

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Toxicology

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