Induction of antiphospholipid antibodies by immunization with synthetic viral and bacterial peptides

Lupus. 1999;8(6):449-55. doi: 10.1177/096120339900800607.


We previously induced pathogenic antibodies against anionic phospholipids (PL) in experimental animals by immunization with lipid-free purified human beta2glycoprotein I (beta2GPI). We hypothesized that antiphospholipid antibodies (aPL) are induced by in vivo binding of foreign beta2GPI to self-PL, thus forming an immunogenic complex against which aPL antibodies are produced. If this hypothesis is true, other PL-binding proteins that are products of ubiquitous viral/bacterial agents may also induce aPL. To test this hypothesis, groups of NIH/Swiss mice were immunized with synthetic peptides of viral and bacterial origin that share structural similarity with the putative PL-binding region of beta2GPI. Compared with the control groups, animals immunized with the peptides produced significantly higher levels of aPL and anti-beta2GPI antibodies. These findings demonstrate that some PL-binding viral and bacterial proteins function like beta2GPI in inducing aPL and anti-beta2GPI production, and are consistent with a role for such viral and bacterial proteins in inducing aPL antibody production in humans.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid / immunology*
  • Antigens, Bacterial / immunology*
  • Antigens, Viral / immunology*
  • Glycoproteins / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunization
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Peptides / chemistry
  • Peptides / immunology*
  • beta 2-Glycoprotein I


  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid
  • Antigens, Bacterial
  • Antigens, Viral
  • Glycoproteins
  • Peptides
  • beta 2-Glycoprotein I