Neutrophil infiltration and systemic vascular inflammation in obese women

Tanvi J. Shah, Courtney E. Leik, Scott W. Walsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


Obesity has become epidemic worldwide and is especially pronounced in women of reproductive age, which is important because obesity is a major risk factor for preeclampsia and chronic hypertension. We hypothesized that vascular inflammation is critical to the pathophysiology of hypertension in obese individuals because obesity and hypertensive disorders share common features related to inflammation. To study this, we collected subcutaneous fat biopsies from normal weight, overweight, and obese women and stained the tissues for CD66b, a neutrophil marker, and for activated nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) as markers of inflammation. We found that the number of neutrophils per vessel and the percentage and intensity of vessel staining for CD66b, NF-κB and COX-2 were greatest in obese women and least in normal weight women, and that neutrophil infiltration and vascular inflammation significantly correlated with body mass index (BMI) and blood pressure. These data may help explain the relationship between obesity and hypertensive disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)116-124
Number of pages9
JournalReproductive Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Cyclooxygenase-2
  • Hypertension
  • Inflammation
  • Neutrophils
  • Nuclear factor-κB
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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