Acetoacetate increases expression of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) in human brain microvascular endothelial cells

William H. Hoffman, Charles Cheng, Gregory G. Passmore, James E. Carroll, David Hess

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It has been hypothesized that ketone bodies cause activation of brain endothelial cells and that this is a factor in the intracerebral crises of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). In this study we used cultured human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMEC) to investigate the effect of beta hydroxybutyrate (BOHB) and acetoacetate (AcAc) on the expression of the adhesion molecule, intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1). Increasing concentrations of AcAc, but not BOHB, caused a significant upregulation of ICAM-1 in comparison to unstimulated cells. Glucose concentrations of 10 and 30 mM, but not 50 mM, also resulted in increased expression of ICAM-1. These results support the hypothesis that activation of HBMEC is involved in the acute complications of DKA, and that ketone bodies and hyperglycemia are factors in the perturbed membrane function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-74
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 13 2002



  • Glucose
  • Human brain
  • Intercellular adhesion molecule-1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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