Preliminary Experience With Renal Transplantation in HIV+ Recipients: Low Acute Rejection and Infection Rates

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Background.Only four centers have reported their results with renal transplantation in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)+ recipients on highly active antiretroviral therapy, and acute rejection (AR) rates have consistently ranged from 43% to 67%.Methods.We examined the outcomes of eight adult HIV+ primary renal allograft recipients with median 15 (range 8–47) months follow-up with multiple other high-risk factors, including African American ethnicity, hepatitis C virus (HCV) positivity, long waiting times, prior sensitization, paucity of live donors, and delayed graft function. Our immunosuppressive protocol consisted of an anti-interleukin-2 receptor antibody for induction, and mycophenolate mofetil, cyclosporin A, and prednisone for maintenance. Initial and 3- to 6-month cyclosporin A trough level targets were 250 to 300 and 225 to 275 ng/mL, respectively, and mycophenolate mofetil dose was adjusted according to 2 to 4 week surveillance and subsequent as needed mycophenolic acid predose concentrations during the first 6 months.Results.Patient and graft survival were 100% and 88%, respectively, with an AR rate of 13% and excellent renal function. No patients developed new-onset diabetes, opportunistic or other serious infections, malignancy, or progression of hepatitis C virus-related liver disease. Excellent suppression of HIV replication with maintenance of CD4 counts was noted in all cases.Conclusions.Our findings suggest that HIV+ patients on highly active antiretroviral therapy can undergo successful renal transplantation with a low incidence of both AR and AIDS-associated and non-AIDS associated infections, despite associated risk factors for poorer outcome. Our encouraging but preliminary results with this protocol will need to be verified in larger numbers of HIV+ renal allograft recipients with longer follow-up.

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