Antiphospholipid antibodies, brain infarcts, and cognitive and motor decline in aging (ABICMA): design of a community-based, longitudinal, clinical-pathological study

Neuroepidemiology. 2013;40(2):73-84. doi: 10.1159/000342761. Epub 2012 Oct 24.


The overall goal of the Antiphospholipid Antibodies, Brain Infarcts, and Cognitive and Motor Decline in Aging study is to test the hypothesis that antiphospholipid antibodies (aPL) are associated with an increased risk of pathologically proven brain infarcts and are related to cognitive and motor decline in aging. Putative biologic mechanisms underlying the association of aPL with infarcts and the relation of aPL with clinical outcomes of cognitive and motor impairment, including vascular and other processes, will be examined. The design of this longitudinal, clinical-pathologic study involves quantifying four aPL assays, and relating these to brain infarcts, and to cognitive and motor decline. Vascular mechanisms assessed using antemortem magnetic resonance neuroimaging and postmortem neuropathology, as well as nonvascular mechanisms of inflammation and blood-brain barrier permeability alterations will be examined as plausible mediators of the relation of aPL to cognitive and motor impairment. We will take advantage of antemortem biological specimens (longitudinally collected sera and plasma from which aPL, annexins, C-reactive protein, and matrix metalloproteinases will be quantified), and clinical, neuroimaging, and postmortem neuropathologic data from about 800 elderly, community-dwelling women and men who have agreed to brain autopsy at the time of death, participating in one of two ongoing studies of aging: the Religious Orders Study and the Memory and Aging Project.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging / blood*
  • Aging / pathology*
  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid / blood*
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Brain / pathology
  • Cerebral Infarction / blood*
  • Cerebral Infarction / pathology
  • Cognition Disorders / blood*
  • Cognition Disorders / pathology
  • Cohort Studies
  • Dementia / blood
  • Dementia / pathology
  • Epidemiologic Research Design*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies / methods
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Movement Disorders / blood
  • Movement Disorders / pathology*


  • Antibodies, Antiphospholipid
  • Biomarkers