Flow effects on prostacyclin production by cultured human endothelial cells

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  22 Mar 1985:
Vol. 227, Issue 4693, pp. 1477-1479
DOI: 10.1126/science.3883488


Endothelial cell functions, such as arachidonic acid metabolism, may be modulated by membrane stresses induced by blood flow. The production of prostacyclin by primary human endothelial cell cultures subjected to pulsatile and steady flow shear stress was measured. The onset of flow led to a sudden increase in prostacyclin production, which decreased to a steady rate within several minutes. The steady-state production rate of cells subjected to pulsatile shear stress was more than twice that of cells exposed to steady shear stress and 16 times greater than that of cells in stationary culture.