Blog: All about Anti- Phospholipid Syndrome

By Dr.Sunitha Shaibu
Group Product Manager (CPC Diagnostics)

What is Anti-Phospholipid Syndrome (APS) ?

Anti- Phospholipid syndrome is a rare autoimmune disease during which the body produces antibodies against phospholipids and associated proteins. It increases the risk of thrombotic tendency and pregnancy complications.

APS and its devastation:


Increased Vascular occlusions can occur both in veins and arteries. Leg vein thrombosis and lung embolism are the most frequent.

APS and pregnancy:

APS in pregnant women is associated with a significantly higher risk of complications such as spontaneous abortion or premature delivery. APS should be considered in cases of repeated miscarriages without any noticeable cause.

Risk factors:

APS can affect people of any age; it is prominent in women. But can affect both sexes. An important risk factor is the presence of other autoimmune diseases, like Lupus.

Anti-phospholipid antibodies:

Anti-phospholipid antibodies are a group of heterogeneous antibodies directed against different phospholipids or plasma proteins. Target antigens include cardiolipin and phosphatidylserine, but also proteins such as beta-2-glycoprotein. In suspected anti-phospholipid syndrome, there are mainly three diagnostic classes: antibodies against cardiolipin and beta-2-glycoprotein 1 and lupus anticoagulant.

Method of Choice:

ELISA is the method of choice for the detection of APLA, since it is highly sensitive, simple to perform, and does not require fresh plasma. The immunoglobulin classes IgA, IgG, and IgM can be investigated separately or together (IgAGM). Alternatively, lupus anticoagulants can be determined by measuring the extension of the coagulation time. These test systems have high specificity for APS, but they are less sensitive than autoantibody.

Key role of EUROIMMUN Elisa:

Medical practitioners and pathologists all over the world prefer EUROIMMUN ELISAs for the determination of autoantibodies against phospholipids primarily for the outstanding features such as:

  • High Specificity and Sensitivity.
  • Individual availability of all Ig classes recommended by the international consensus statement.
  • Flexibility: Manual and automation possible.

The Diagnostic Strategy:

This diagram would give an easy-to-understand graphical representation of the process:

On this APS Day, let us thank the medical fraternity who are focusing on various research to reduce the severity of the disease and improve the quality of life of patients.

I wish, research should focus on improved drugs which can switch off the harmful signals thereby diminishing the complications in patients and ensuring a better life.

Read more about other diseases and their methods of diagnosis on CPC Diagnostics’ blog here.