Abstract Selectin-ligand interactions mediate tethering and rolling of circulating leukocytes on the vessel wall during inflammation. Extensive study has been devoted to elucidating the kinetic and mechanical constraints of receptor-ligand-interaction-mediated leukocyte adhesion, yet many questions remain unanswered. Here, we describe our design of an inverted flow chamber to compare adhesions of HL-60 cells to E-selectin in the upright and inverted orientations. This new, to our knowledge, design allowed us to evaluate the effect of gravity and to investigate the mechanisms of flow-enhanced adhesion. Cell rolling in the two orientations was qualitatively similar, and the quantitative differences can be explained by the effect of gravity, which promotes free-flowing cells to tether and detached cells to reattach to the surface in the upright orientation but prevents such attachment from happening in the inverted orientation. We characterized rolling stability by the lifetime of rolling adhesion and detachment of rolling cells, which could be easily measured in the inverted orientation, but not in the upright orientation because of the reattachment of transiently detached cells. Unlike the transient tether lifetime of E-selectin-ligand interaction, which exhibited triphasic slip-catch-slip bonds, the lifetime of rolling adhesion displayed a biphasic trend that first increased with the wall shear stress, reached a maximum at 0.4 dyn/cm2, and then decreased gradually. We have developed a minimal mathematical model for the probability of rolling adhesion. Comparison of the theoretical predictions to data has provided model validation and allowed evaluation of the effective two-dimensional association on-rate, kon, and the binding affinity, Ka, of the E-selectin-ligand interaction. kon increased with the wall shear stress from 0.1 to 0.7 dyn/cm2. Ka first increased with the wall shear stress, reached a maximum at 0.4 dyn/cm2, and then decreased gradually. Our results provide insights into how the interplay between flow-dependent on-rate and off-rate of E-selectin-ligand bonds determine flow-enhanced cell rolling stability.