Saturday, December 1, 2012

Preformed Complement-Activating Low-Level Donor-Specific Antibody Predicts Early Antibody-Mediated Rejection in Renal Allografts.

BACKGROUND: Donor-specific anti-HLA antibodies (DSA) are a major cause of alloimmune injury. Transplant recipients with negative complement-dependent cytotoxic crossmatch (CDC-XM) and donor cell-based flow cytometric crossmatch (flow-XM) but low level DSA (i.e., by Luminex) have worse outcomes compared with nonsensitized patients. The aim of this study was to establish whether complement-activating ability in this low-level DSA, present before transplantation, as determined by this technique is important in dictating pathogenicity.
METHODS: We retrospectively studied 52 patients with preformed DSA detected by single-antigen flow cytometric fluorescent beads (SAFBs). Patients were transplanted using a steroid-sparing regimen consisting of alemtuzumab induction, 1 week of corticosteroids and tacrolimus monotherapy.Fifteen (29%) of 52 patients experienced antibody-mediated rejection (AMR), whereas 37 (71%) patients did not. There were no demographic differences between patients with AMR and those without. Pretransplant sera were retested using a modified (SAFB) assay, which detects the presence of the complement fragment C4d as a result of DSA-induced complement activation.
RESULTS: C4d+DSA were detected in 10 (19%) of 52 patients. Biopsy-proven AMR occurred in 7 (70%) of the 10 patients with C4d+DSA and in 8 (19%) of 42 patients with C4d-DSA. AMR-free survival was worse in patients with C4d+DSA (P<0.001).
CONCLUSIONS: The ability of preformed, low-level, DSA to trigger C4d fixation in vitro in patients with negative conventional crossmatch tests is predictive for AMR. C4d SAFB is potentially a powerful tool for risk stratification prior to transplantation and may allow identification of unacceptable donor antigens, or patients who may require enhanced immunosuppression (read more) Print this post

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