Jason J Schrager

Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Michigan, United States

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Publications (2)6.3 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) is a rare complication following liver transplantation and carries a poor prognosis with mortality approaching 90-95%. Diagnosis of GVHD is often delayed due to early symptoms mimicking more common, entities such as drug reactions and viral syndromes. To date, definitive diagnosis has been difficult and has relied on a constellation of clinical and histopathologic variables. We present the use of short tandem repeat DNA "fingerprinting" technology as a method of early, definitive diagnosis of GVHD in patients after liver transplantation. A patient status-postorthotopic cadaveric-liver transplant, with an uncomplicated immediate posttransplant course, presented 4 weeks after transplant with fever, diarrhea, and maculopapular rash on her palms, soles, and back. The patient's condition worsened despite empiric treatment for an infectious etiology. Skin and rectal biopsies were suspicious for GVHD. DNA was isolated from the skin and rectal biopsies as well as from a donor lymph node. PCR amplification was done for nine highly polymorphic short tandem repeats for each specimen and a unique DNA "fingerprint" was obtained from each. DNA from skin and rectum demonstrated mixed chimerism with both donor and recipient alleles detected. Thorough analysis confirmed GVHD. Short tandem repeats for DNA fingerprinting represents an efficient and reproducible method for the definitive diagnosis of GVHD after liver transplantation. Rapid detection of GVHD using this technology, coupled with early initiation of therapy, may lead to improved survival for patients with GVHD after solid organ transplant.
    Transplantation 02/2006; 81(1):21-5. · 3.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Esophageal carcinoma is an aggressive malignancy and long-term survival is poor. Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) is an additional staging modality to assess locoregional extent of this disease. We hypothesized that EUS may improve survival through more effective staging and better optimization of treatment. We performed a retrospective review of all patients presenting with esophageal cancer at our institution from 1993 to 2003 (n = 97) and compared outcomes between patients who underwent staging EUS and computed tomography (CT) versus CT alone. Survival was calculated using Kaplan-Meier methods and compared between groups using the log-rank test. Mean survival was compared using analysis of variance (ANOVA) methods. Overall 3-, 6-, and 12-month survival did not differ between the 2 groups (EUS: 92%, 84%, and 80% and CT: 83%, 67%, and 43%, log-rank P = .1), which held true despite stratification by treatment modality (all P >.1). The mean survival for the EUS group was 16 +/- 3 months and for the CT group, 12 +/- 1.5 months (P = .2). Further analysis by stage showed no difference in survival between the 2 groups (all P >.1). However, stage 2A and 3 surgical patients had better survival than nonsurgical patients (both P = .02) irrespective of staging modality. EUS patients were no more likely to receive surgical, neoadjuvant, or definitive chemoradiation than CT patients (all P >.1). Overall survival as well as survival by stage did not differ between patients who underwent staging via EUS and CT versus CT alone, and patients staged with EUS were not more likely to receive any one intervention. Irrespective of staging modality, stage 2A and 3 patients who underwent surgical intervention had better survival than those who did not receive an operation.
    The American Journal of Surgery 12/2005; 190(5):682-6. · 2.52 Impact Factor