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Upregulation of adhesion molecule expression on endothelial cells (EC) and circulating leukocytes, by locally produced inflammatory mediators, may result in the enhanced infiltration of leukocytes into tissue, e.g. the airways of asthma patients. The present study investigates whether the expression of adhesion molecules on granulocytes and monocytes from asthma patients is affected by chemotactic factors, i.e. interleukin-8 (IL-8) and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1). Flow cytometric analysis showed that the intrinsic expression of the various adhesion molecules on peripheral blood phagocytes from asthma patients was not different from that of healthy individuals. However, stimulation of monocytes with MCP-1 resulted only in upregulation of the expression of CD14 on monocytes from symptomatic asthma patients but not on monocytes from asymptomatic asthma patients and healthy individuals. Stimulation of granulocytes with IL-8 did not change the expression of the various β1-and β2-integrin molecules, such as VLA-4, LFA-1, CR3 and p150,95. Since earlier studies have shown that CD14 on monocytes mediates monocyte adhesion to activated vascular EC the present findings suggest that during the active phase of asthma upregulation of CD14 on monocytes by MCP-1 may lead to an increased adhesion of monocytes to vascular endothelium and their subsequent transendothelial migration into the tissue of the airways.