Predictive, protective, orphan autoantibodies: the example of anti-phospholipid antibodies

Autoimmun Rev. 2008 Sep;7(8):585-7. doi: 10.1016/j.autrev.2008.08.001. Epub 2008 Aug 13.


Anti-phospholipid antibodies (aPL) are one of the most recent examples of autoantibodies that can appear even long time before any clinical manifestation can be associated with them. There is a general agreement that they may represent a strong risk factor for recurrent thrombosis and/or fetal losses. Anti-phospholipid antibodies represent a necessary but not sufficient factor (first hit) for thrombosis, and require additional triggering factors (second hit) to disclose the thrombogenic activity. Several factors may affect the predictive value of aPL, including titre, immunoglobulin isotype, fine antigenic specificity and affinity binding activity. Their careful evaluation is suggested in order to characterize the true predictive value of aPL.

Publication types

  • Editorial
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid / biosynthesis*
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid / blood
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid / physiology
  • Antiphospholipid Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Antiphospholipid Syndrome / immunology*
  • Antiphospholipid Syndrome / prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Phospholipids / immunology*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Risk Factors


  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid
  • Phospholipids