Blood flow patterns in proatherogenic and antiatherogenic regions are rather different. We hypothesize that the laminar flow with steady shear stress increased nitric oxide (NO) bioavailability while disturbed flow with low shear stress reduced it, which is mediating by glypican-1. Thus, we detected the expression of glypican-1 under different shear stress magnitudes, and tested whether the magnitude of shear stress determines the level of endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) via glypican-1 by using phosphatidylinositol phospholipase C (PI-PLC). Results revealed that the expression of glypican-1 depends on the magnitude and duration of shear stress loading. Activation of eNOS in HUVECs is downregulated by 4 dyn/cm2 of shear stress, but is upregulated by 15 dyn/cm2. Removal of glypican-1 significantly suppressed the 15 dyn/cm2 shear stress-induced eNOS activity, and further reduced the 4 dyn/cm2-inhibited eNOS activity. Therefore, eNOS activation depends on shear stress magnitudes and is mediated by glypican-1. The role of glypican-1 in mediating the eNOS activation under shear stress might involve in protecting the endothelial function against disturbed flow and enhancing the sensitive of the endothelial cell to laminar flow, supporting a potential role of glypican-1 against atherosclerosis.