HLA in transplantation
The human major histocompatibility complex is a family of genes that encodes HLAs, which have a crucial role in defence against foreign pathogens and immune surveillance of tumours. In the context of transplantation, HLA molecules are polymorphic antigens that comprise an immunodominant alloreactive trigger for the immune response, resulting in rejection. Remarkable advances in knowledge and technology in the field of immunogenetics have considerably enhanced the safety of transplantation. However, access to transplantation among individuals who have become sensitized as a result of previous exposure to alloantigens is reduced proportional to the breadth of their sensitization. New approaches for crossing the HLA barrier in transplantation using plasmapheresis, intravenous immunoglobulin and kidney paired donation have been made possible by the relative ease with which even low levels of anti-HLA antibodies can now be detected and tracked. The development of novel protocols for the induction of tolerance and new approaches to immunomodulation was also facilitated by advances in HLA technology. Here, we review the progress made in understanding HLAs that has enabled organ transplantation to become a life-saving endeavour that is accessible even for sensitized patients. We also discuss novel approaches to desensitization, immunomodulation and tolerance induction that have the potential to further improve transplantation access and outcomes.
IdeS (Imlifidase): A Novel Agent That Cleaves Human IgG and Permits Successful Kidney Transplantation Across High-strength Donor-specific Antibody
OBJECTIVES/OBJECTIVE:The presence of a donor-specific positive crossmatch has been considered to be a contraindication to kidney transplantation because of the risk of hyperacute rejection. Desensitization is the process of removing hazardous preformed donor-specific antibody (DSA) in order to safely proceed with transplant. Traditionally, this involves plasmapheresis and intravenous immune globulin treatments that occur over days to weeks, and has been feasible when there is a living donor and the date of the transplant is known, allowing time for pre-emptive treatments. For sensitized patients without a living donor, transplantation has been historically difficult. SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA/BACKGROUND:IdeS (imlifidase) is an endopeptidase derived from Streptococcus pyogenes which has specificity for human IgG, and when infused intravenously results in rapid cleavage of IgG. METHODS:Here we present our single-center's experience with 7 highly sensitized (cPRA98-100%) kidney transplant candidates who had DSA resulting in positive crossmatches with their donors (5 deceased, 2 living) who received IdeS within 24â€Šhours prior to transplant. RESULTS:All pre-IdeS crossmatches were positive and would have been prohibitive for transplantation. All crossmatches became negative post-IdeS and the patients underwent successful transplantation. Three patients had DSA rebound and antibody-mediated rejection, which responded to standard of care therapies. Three patients had delayed graft function, which ultimately resolved. No serious adverse events were associated with IdeS. All patients have functioning renal allografts at a median follow-up of 235 days. CONCLUSION/CONCLUSIONS:IdeS may represent a groundbreaking new method of desensitization for patients who otherwise might have no hope for receiving a lifesaving transplant.
Impact of the 2014 kidney allocation system changes on trends in A2/A2B into B kidney transplantation and organ procurement organization reporting of donor subtyping
The current kidney allocation system (KAS) preferentially allocates kidneys from blood type A2 or A2B (A/A2B) donors to blood type B candidates. We used national data to evaluate center-level performance of A2/A2B to B transplants, and organ procurement organization (OPO) reporting of type A or AB donor subtyping, in 5-year time periods prior to (2009-2014) and following (2015-2019) KAS implementation. The number of centers performing A2/A2B to B transplants increased from 17 pre-KAS to 76 post-KAS, though this still represents only a minority of centers (7.3% pre-KAS and 32.6% post-KAS). For high-performing centers, the median net increase in A2/A2B to B transplants was 19 cases (range -2-72) per center in the 5 years post-KAS. The median net increase in total B recipient transplants was 21 cases (range -17-119) per center. Despite requirements for performance of subtyping, in 2019 subtyping was reported on only 56.4% of A/AB donors. This translates into potential missed opportunities for B recipients, and even post-KAS up to 2322 A2/A2B donor kidneys may have been allocated for transplantation as A/AB. Further progress must be made both at center and OPO levels to broaden implementation of A2/A2B to B transplants for the benefit of underserved recipients.
A Propensity-Matched Cohort Study of Tocilizumab in Patients With Coronavirus Disease 2019
To determine the impact of tocilizumab, a monoclonal antibody against the interleukin 6 receptor, on survival in patients with coronavirus disease 2019.
Medical evaluation of living kidney donors with nephrolithiasis: a survey of practices in the United States
BACKGROUND:A scarcity of organs has driven the transplant community to broaden selection criteria for both living and deceased donors. Living donor transplants offer better patient and allograft survival when compared with deceased donor transplants. Many transplant centers now allow complex living donors such as those with nephrolithiasis to undergo nephrectomy. METHODS:We conducted a survey of medical and surgical directors of kidney transplant programs in the United States to shed light on current practices pertaining to medical evaluation of living kidney donors with nephrolithiasis. 353 surveys were e-mailed to medical directors and surgical directors of transplant programs after contacts were obtained from UNOS. RESULTS:49 completed surveys were returned (13.9%). 77.7% (38/49) of survey participants said their centers will consider living kidney donor candidates with a history of symptomatic kidney stones, 69.4% (34/49) said their centers will consider candidates who are incidentally found to have kidney stones and 10.2% (5/49) said their centers decline all potential donors with nephrolithiasis. CONCLUSIONS:Several programs are still reluctant to allow potential donors with nephrolithiasis to donate. There is an unmet need to develop evidence-based guidelines to optimize outcomes in this population of kidney donors with nephrolithiasis and their recipients.
Successful A2 to B Deceased Donor Kidney Transplant after Desensitization for High-Strength Non-HLA Antibody Made Possible by Utilizing a Hepatitis C Positive Donor [Case Report]
Desensitization using plasma exchange can remove harmful antibodies prior to transplantation and mitigate risks for hyperacute and severe early acute antibody-mediated rejection. Traditionally, the use of plasma exchange requires a living donor so that the timing of treatments relative to transplant can be planned. Non-HLA antibody is increasingly recognized as capable of causing antibody-mediated renal allograft rejection and has been associated with decreased graft longevity. Our patient had high-strength non-HLA antibody deemed prohibitive to transplantation without desensitization, but no living donors. As the patient was eligible to receive an A2 ABO blood group organ and was willing to accept a hepatitis C positive donor kidney, this afforded a high probability of receiving an offer within a short enough time frame to attempt empiric desensitization in anticipation of a deceased donor transplant. Fifteen plasma exchange treatments were performed before the patient received an organ offer, and the patient was successfully transplanted. Hepatitis C infection was treated posttransplant. No episodes of rejection were observed. At one-year posttransplant, the patient maintains good graft function. In this case, willingness to consider nontraditional donor organs enabled us to mimic living donor desensitization using a deceased donor.
Differences in national and international guidelines regarding use of kidney stone formers as living kidney donors
PURPOSE OF REVIEW/OBJECTIVE:Traditionally, nephrolithiasis was considered a relative contraindication to kidney donation because of a risk of recurrent stones in donors and adverse stone-related outcomes in recipients. However, the scarcity of organs has driven the transplant community to re-examine and broaden selection criteria for living donors with stones. In this review, we summarize and contrast the guidelines published by various prominent national and international societies on this topic. RECENT FINDINGS/RESULTS:Although recent iterations of living donor guidelines are less stringent with respect to nephrolithiasis than those published in the 1990s, there is little consensus among national and international transplant society guidelines regarding selection criteria for potential kidney donors with nephrolithiasis. SUMMARY/CONCLUSIONS:The lack of evidence-based guidelines deters transplant centers from implementing selection criteria to accept donors with nephrolithiasis and discourages studies of outcomes in donors with nephrolithiasis and their recipients. In addition to drawing attention to the disparities in prevailing guidelines, we put forth several questions that must be answered before generalizable criteria for selection of donor with nephrolithiasis can be developed.
High Prevalence of CKD of Unknown Etiology in Uddanam, India
Introduction/UNASSIGNED:There were concerns raised regarding a high prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) in Uddanam, a fertile subtropical low-altitude territory in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. The present study was undertaken to ascertain the prevalence of CKD, disease characteristics, and risk factor profile in this area. Methods/UNASSIGNED:We selected 2210 subjects (age >18 years) using multistage sampling. After obtaining demographic and anthropometric data, urinary protein-creatinine ratio, serum creatinine, and blood glucose were measured in all the subjects. Glomerular filtration rate was estimated (eGFR) using the Modification of Diet in Renal Disease equation. Results/UNASSIGNED:) was seen in 307 (13.98%) patients with a mean eGFR of 34.8 Â± 16.6. The prevalence of subjects having low eGFR and with proteinuria (CKD) was 18.23%. Major risk factors, such as diabetes, long-standing hypertension, and significant proteinuria, were absent in 73% of patients with CKD, implying that a significant proportion of the population is afflicted with the entity "CKD of unknown etiology (CKDu)." Conclusion/UNASSIGNED:The prevalence of CKD and CKDu in Uddanam is much higher than other earlier studies in either rural or urban communities in India. We suggest that there is a dire need to review health policies and allocate resources for prevention and treatment of CKD in the Uddanam region.
Therapeutic Modulation of the Complement System in Kidney Transplantation: Clinical Indications and Emerging Drug Leads
The complement system is integral to innate immunity, and it is an essential deterrent against infections. The complement apparatus comprises of >30 fluid-phase and surface-bound elements that also engage with the adaptive immune system, clear harmful immune complexes, and orchestrates several salutary physiological processes. An imbalance in the complement system's tightly regulated machinery and the consequent unrestrained complement activation underpins the pathogenesis of a wide array of inflammatory, autoimmune, neoplastic and degenerative disorders. Antibody-mediated rejection is a leading cause of graft failure in kidney transplantation. Complement-induced inflammation and endothelial injury have emerged as the primary mechanisms in the pathogenesis of this form of rejection. Researchers in the field of transplantation are now trying to define the role and efficacy of complement targeting agents in the prevention and treatment of rejection and other complement related conditions that lead to graft injury. Here, we detail the current clinical indications for complement therapeutics and the scope of existing and emerging therapies that target the complement system, focusing on kidney transplantation.
Repeat A2 Into B Kidney Transplantation After Failed Prior A2 Into B Transplant: A Case Report
Kidneys from donors with blood type A2 can be successfully transplanted into blood type B and O recipients without the need for desensitization if the recipient's starting anti-A hemagglutinin titer is within an acceptable range. National kidney allocation policy now offers priority for eligible B recipients to receive A2 or A2B deceased donor kidneys, and therefore, the frequency with which A2 or A2B to B transplants will occur is expected to increase. The precise mechanisms by which antibody-mediated rejection is averted in these cases despite the presence of both circulating anti-A antibody and expression of the A2 antigen on the graft endothelium are not known. Whether this process mirrors proposed mechanisms of accommodation, which can occur in recipients of ABO incompatible transplants, is also not known. Repeated exposure to mismatched antigens after retransplantation could elicit memory responses resulting in antibody rebound and accelerated antibody-mediated rejection. Whether this would occur in the setting of repeated A2 donor exposure was uncertain. Here we report the case of a patient with history of a prior A2 to B transplant which failed owing to nonimmunologic reasons; the patient successfully underwent a repeat A2 to B transplant. Neither rebound in anti-A2 antibody nor clinical evidence of antibody-mediated rejection were observed after the transplant. Current kidney allocation will likely enable more such transplants in the future, and this may provide a unique patient population in whom the molecular mechanisms of incompatible graft accommodation may be investigated.