Cocaine use causes significant cardiovascular morbidity from its hemodynamic effects. It is less clear whether cocaine promotes atherosclerosis. Vascular inflammation is one of the earliest steps in the pathophysiology of atherosclerosis. We hypothesized that cocaine results in an increase in inflammatory markers. Study objective was to measure the acute effects of intravenous cocaine on biomarkers of vascular inflammation. Eleven chronic cocaine users were enrolled. After a drug-free period, they received intravenous cocaine at 0.36 mg/kg dose in an in-hospital controlled environment. Serum levels of soluble CD40 ligand, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, interleukin 6, and soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 were measured at baseline, 6 h, 24 h, and 6 days after cocaine challenge and at baseline for controls. After cocaine challenge, sCD40 ligand levels decreased in subjects and were significantly lower at 24 h. MCP-1 levels decreased and were significantly lower at the 6-day time point. No significant changes in IL-6 or sICAM-1 level were found. In conclusion, intravenous cocaine did not result in an increase in levels of inflammatory markers. Levels of MCP-1 and sCD40L decreased significantly. This unexpected finding suggests that chronic effects of cocaine on inflammation may be different from acute effects or that higher dosing may have differential effects as compared to lower dose used here.
Cardiovascular Toxicology – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 25, 2018
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