Immune Desensitization Allows Pediatric Blood Group Incompatible Kidney Transplantation
Blood group incompatible transplantation (ABOi) in children is rare as pretransplant conditioning remains challenging and concerns persist about the potential increased risk of rejection.Methods
We describe the results of 11 ABOi pediatric renal transplant recipients in the 2 largest centers in the United Kingdom, sharing the same tailored desensitization protocol. Patients with pretransplant titers of 1 or more in 8 received rituximab 1 month before transplant; tacrolimus and mycophenolate mofetil were started 1 week before surgery. Antibody removal was performed to reduce titers to 1 or less in 8 on the day of the operation. No routine postoperative antibody removal was performed.Results
Death-censored graft survival at last follow-up was 100% in the ABOi and 98% in 50 compatible pediatric transplants. One patient developed grade 2A rejection successfully treated with antithymocyte globulin. Another patient had a titer rise of 2 dilutions treated with 1 immunoadsorption session. There was no histological evidence of rejection in the other 9 patients. One patient developed cytomegalovirus and BK and 2 others EBV and BK viremia.Conclusions
Tailored desensitization in pediatric blood group incompatible kidney transplantation results in excellent outcomes with graft survival and rejection rates comparable with compatible transplants.