Role of Infectious Diseases in the Antiphospholipid Syndrome (Including Its Catastrophic Variant)
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Purpose of Review
The antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) is characterized by the development of thrombotic events and pregnancy morbidity in the presence of antiphospholipid antibodies (aPL). An infectious etiology for this syndrome has been postulated. The present review is aimed to summarize recent evidence about the role of infections and vaccines in the pathogenesis of the APS (including its catastrophic variant).
There is an increased risk of developing aPL in various infections, particularly in viral infections. The most frequent infection related to aPL has been hepatitis C virus. These antibodies may be associated with thromboembolic events, including catastrophic APS. There is a link between vaccinations, such as the tetanus toxoid and aPL, due to molecular mimicry between the two molecules.
Accumulated evidence supports that the presence of aPL is associated with a variety of infections, including viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites, and the main mechanism to explain this correlation is molecular mimicry. Moreover, a link between vaccinations, such as the tetanus toxoid, and APS has also been described.
KeywordsAntiphospholipid syndrome Infections Vaccines Thrombosis
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Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
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