Nitric Oxide (NO) and soluble adhesion molecules are promising biomarkers, which predict endothelial dysfunction in sickle cell disease (SCD). Several studies have investigated the relationship between NO (as well as its metabolites) and endothelial adhesion molecules in SCD. However, these studies were done mainly in the developed world, and it is difficult to extrapolate the findings to SCD populations in other geographical regions such as Africa due to significant disparities in the results. The aim of the current study was to determine the correlation between levels of nitric oxide metabolites (NOx) and adhesion molecules in SCD patients in a tertiary hospital in Ghana. A case control cross-sectional study involving 100 SCD (made up of HbSS and HbSC patients) and 60 healthy controls was conducted. Concentrations of NOx and soluble endothelial adhesion molecules (ICAM-1, VCAM-1 and E-selectin) were measured in all the study participants (n = 160) by the Griess reagent system and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Correlation analysis was performed to determine a possible link between the variables. Levels of soluble adhesion molecules were higher in the HbSS patients. Correlation of NOx with ICAM-1 almost approached significance (r = 0.565, p
= 0.058) in the HbSS patients. There were no correlations between NOx and E-selectin in both HbSS and HbSC patients. There were no significant correlations between NOx and VCAM-1 in all the study participants (p
> 0.05). Of the soluble adhesion molecules, ICAM-1 showed a significant positive correlation with VCAM-1 in the HbSC patients. There were no significant differences between the adhesion molecules and the age of participants in the various study groups. Whether or not a significant correlation exists between NOx and soluble adhesion molecules may not depend on the sickle cell genotype. The expression of adhesion molecules may not depend on age.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited