Pathophysiology of antiphospholipid antibodies: Absence of prostaglandin-mediated effects on cultured endothelium

Donald J. Dudley, Murray D. Mitchell, D. Ware Branch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Antiphospholipid antibodies are associated with recurrent pregnancy loss and thrombosis. Studies suggest that antiphospholipid antibodies may inhibit the production of prostacyclin by vascular tissues. We incubated sera from women with moderate to high levels of antiphospholipid antibodies with primary human umbilical vein endothelial cell cultures. Intact confluent, subconfluent, hydrogen peroxide-damaged, and mechanically damaged endothelial cell monolayers were evaluated for the production of the prostacyclin metabolite 6-keto-prostaglandin F in the presence of sera that were positive and negative for antiphospholipid antibodies. All sera were assayed for baseline concentrations of 6-keto-prostaglandin F before incubation with endothelial monolayers. Additionally, the extent of binding of antiphospholipid antibodies to intact and damaged endothelium was studied by immunofluorescent techniques and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Our results indicate that prostacyclin production is not impaired by sera containing antiphospholipid antibodies, regardless of the condition of the endothelium. Further, we were unable to demonstrate binding of immunoglobulin from sera containing antiphospholipid antibodies to intact or damaged endothelium. However, the baseline concentration of 6-keto-prostaglandin F was nearly fourfold higher in sera containing antiphospholipid antibodies. The finding of elevated baseline serum concentrations of prostacyclin metabolite in patients with antiphospholipid antibodies suggests a condition of long-term stimulation or altered metabolism of prostacyclin.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)953-959
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Antiphospholipid antibodies
  • endothelium
  • prostacyclin production

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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