Article

Long-term effects on renal function of dose-reduced calcineurin inhibitor and sirolimus in cardiac transplant patients.

Cardiovascular Institute, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
Clinical Transplantation (Impact Factor: 1.63). 02/2011; 26(1):42-9. DOI: 10.1111/j.1399-0012.2011.01407.x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Calcineurin inhibitor (CNI)-associated renal insufficiency is common after cardiac transplantation (CTX); however, the addition of sirolimus allows for CNI dose reduction and this strategy may limit CNI renal toxicity. This study examines the long-term effects of such a strategy. METHODS: Patients from a single center who had CTX from 1990 to 2007 and who were converted to sirolimus and a dose-reduced CNI were compared to group-matched controls maintained on CNI and an antiproliferative agent. RESULTS: One hundred and fifty-five patients (79 sirolimus and 76 controls) were included and had similar baseline characteristics. Sirolimus was started a mean of 1429 d post-CTX and maintained for a mean of 823 d. Reason for conversion to sirolimus was renal insufficiency (34%), vasculopathy (29%), recurrent rejection (19%), and other (18%). The eGFR was not different between groups at baseline (44.7 mL/min/1.73 m(2) vs. 46.0, p = 0.64) or at any point during follow-up: 90 d, 180 d, 1 yr, 2 yr, and 3 yr. conclusion: Patients converted to a regimen of sirolimus and a dosed-reduced CNI have stable renal function over the following three yr, but do not have an improvement in renal outcomes compared to patients maintained on full dose CNI.

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    ABSTRACT: In the last decade, mTOR inhibitors (mTOR-is) have become the cornerstone of the calcineurin inhibitor (CNI)-reduced/free regimens aimed to the preservation of post-transplant renal function. We compared utility and safety of the total replacement of calcineurin inhibitors with a mTOR-i with a strategy based on calcineurin inhibitor minimization and concomitant use of m-TOR-i. In a retrospective multi-center cohort of 394 maintenance cardiac recipients with renal failure (GFR<60mL/min/1.73m(2)), we compared 235 patients in whom CNI was replaced with a mTOR-i (sirolimus or everolimus) with 159 patients in whom mTOR-is were used to minimize CNIs. A propensity score analysis was carried out to balance between group differences. Overall, after a median time of 2years from mTOR-i initiation, between group differences for the evolution of renal function were not observed. In a multivariate adjusted model, improvement of renal function was limited to patients with mTOR-i usage within 5years after transplantation, particularly with the conversion strategy, and in those patients who could maintain mTOR-i therapy. Significant differences between strategies were not found for mortality, infection and mTOR-i withdrawal due to drug-related adverse events. However, conversion group tended to have a higher acute rejection incidence than the minimization group (p=0.07). In terms of renal benefits, our results support an earlier use of mTOR-is, irrespective of the strategy. The selection of either a conversion or a CNI minimization protocol should be based on the clinical characteristics of the patients, particularly their rejection risk.
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