Anionic polysaccharides inhibit adhesion of sickle erythrocytes to the vascular endothelium and result in improved hemodynamic behavior.Blood 1999; 93(4):1422-9Blood
The abnormal adherence of sickle red blood cells (SS RBC) to vascular endothelium may play an important role in vasoocclusion in sickle cell anemia. Thrombospondin (TSP), unusually large molecular weight forms of von Willebrand factor, and laminin are known to enhance adhesion of SS RBC. Also, these endothelial proteins bind to sulfated glycolipids and this binding is inhibited by anionic polysaccharides. Reversible sickling may expose normally cryptic membrane sulfatides that could mediate this adhesive interaction. In this study, we have investigated the effect of anionic polysaccharides, in the presence or absence of TSP, on SS RBC adhesion to the endothelium, using cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) (for the adhesion assay) and the ex vivo mesocecum of the rat (for hemodynamic evaluation). The baseline adhesion (ie, without added TSP) of SS RBC to HUVEC was most effectively inhibited by high molecular weight dextran sulfate (HDS), whereas low molecular weight dextran sulfate (LDS) and the glycosaminoglycan chondroitin sulfate A (CSA) also had significant inhibitory effects. Heparin was mildly effective whereas other glycosaminoglycans (chondroitin sulfates B and C, heparan sulfate, and fucoidan) were ineffective. Similarly, HDS and CSA resulted in an improved hemodynamic behavior of SS RBC. Soluble TSP caused significant increases in SS RBC adhesion and in the peripheral resistance. Both HDS and CSA prevented TSP-enhanced adhesion and hemodynamic abnormalities. Thus, anionic polysaccharides can inhibit SS RBC-endothelium interaction in the presence or absence of soluble TSP. These agents may interact with RBC membrane component(s) and prevent TSP-mediated adhesion of SS RBC to the endothelium.