Background: The role of leukocyte adhesion molecules in patients with burns and their relationship to other parameters of inflammation and lipid metabolism is only recently beginning to be explored. Therefore, we investigated the temporal changes in the levels of soluble cell adhesion molecules and other parameters of inflammation and lipoprotein metabolism in patients with thermal injury.
Materials and Methods: The serum levels of soluble adhesion molecules, intercellular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1), vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1), and sE-selectin, C-reactive protein (CRP) and fibrinogen in seven patients with severe burns over a 30- day period were measured to determine the involvement of these factors in the pathophysiology of severe burns. Serum levels of sICAM-1, sVCAM-1 and sE-selectin were determined by ELISA. Furthermore, total cholesterol, highdensity lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL chol), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL chol) and triglycerides (TG) were measured.
Results: Blood levels of sICAM-1, sVCAM-1, CRP and fibrinogen increased with maximum values six days after thermal injury. In contrast, serum levels of sE-selectin were elevated two days after thermal injury. The sICAM-1, sVCAM-1 and sE-selectin levels correlated significantly with both the CRP and the fibrinogen levels. Plasma total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and LDL cholesterol decreased with minimum values four days after thermal injury. Furthermore, an increase of triglyceride levels was observed.
Conclusion: The observed inflammatory response of soluble cell adhesion molecules could be useful in monitoring endothelial activation immediately following thermal injury. Further studies involving a larger number of patients with burns should help to clarify the extent to which measured parameters, especially the temporal changes of sCAMs, could be relevant in assessing the morbidity of patients with thermal injury.