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Effects of tibolone on cell adhesion molecules in postmenopausal women

Egarter, Christian MD; Sator, Michael MD; Huber, Johannes MD, PhD


Objective The first step in atherosclerosis is characterized by the adherence of lymphocytes and monocytes to cell adhesion molecules expressed by endothelial cells. Therefore, we wanted to investigate the effect of tibolone on the circulating levels of various cell adhesion molecules.

Design Thirty postmenopausal women were enrolled in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled outpatient trial.

Results Tibolone led to a significant decrease in soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1, soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-3, and soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule-1, but had no effect on monocyte chemotactic protein-1.

Conclusions The direct favorable effects of tibolone on endothelial cells may explain the clinical benefits of this substance in terms of anti-ischemic effects and osteoporosis prevention.

From the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Vienna Medical School, Vienna, Austria.

Received April 15, 2002; revised and accepted September 26, 2002.

This study was supported by an unconditional grant from Organon GesmbH, Austria, and by a grant from the Medical Scientific Fund of the Major of the City of Vienna.

Address reprint requests to Christian Egarter, MD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Vienna, Währinger Gürtel 18-20 1090 Vienna, Austria. E-mail:

©2003The North American Menopause Society