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Use of HCV+ Donors Does Not Affect HCV Clearance With Directly Acting Antiviral Therapy But Shortens the Wait Time to Kidney Transplantation

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Abstract

Background

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is prevalent in the renal transplant population but direct acting antiviral agents (DAA) provide an effective cure of HCV infection without risk of allograft rejection.

Methods

We report our experience treating 43 renal transplant recipients with 4 different DAA regimens.

Results

One hundred percent achieved a sustained viral response by 12 weeks after therapy, and DAA regimens were well tolerated. Recipients transplanted with a HCV+ donor responded equally well to DAA therapy those transplanted with a kidney from an HCV− donor, but recipients of HCV+ organs experienced significantly shorter wait times to transplantation, 485 days (interquartile range, 228-783) versus 969 days (interquartile range, 452-2008; P = 0.02).

Conclusions

On this basis, we advocate for a strategy of early posttransplant HCV eradication to facilitate use of HCV+ organs whenever possible. Additional studies are needed to identify the optimal DAA regimen for kidney transplant recipients, accounting for efficacy, timing relative to transplant, posttransplant clinical outcomes, and cost.

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