[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background Anti-neutrophil cytoplasm antibody (ANCA) associated vasculitis with renal involvement requires treatment with potentially
toxic drugs to reduce morbidity and mortality, and there is a major challenge to determine clinical and histological features
predictive of renal prognosis. The aim of our study was to evaluate the use of the 2010 international histological classification
for ANCA-associated glomerulonephritis (AAGN) as a predictor of renal outcome when used in conjunction with other prognostic
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mixed rejection in kidney transplantation consists of histologic and/or serological evidence of both cellular and humoral components. As it is not confined to a distinct category in the Banff classification, how to best manage these patients is not clear. The aim of this study was to determine the incidence and outcome of morphological T-cell-mediated rejection (TCMR) with a humoral component, defined as the presence of either DSA or C4d, compared with the outcome of pure TCMR.
We retrospectively studied 922 consecutive renal transplant recipients and analyzed patients with TCMR according to the evidence of a humoral component.
A total of 147 cases of morphological TCMR were analyzed. Of these, 92 (62.6%) had "pure" TCMR and 55 (37.4%) had "mixed" TCMR on the index biopsy. On univariant analysis, diffuse C4d (odds ratio [OR]=10.9, 95% confidence interval [CI]=1.8-66.9, P=0.01) and DSA positivity at the time of index biopsy (OR=2.8, 95% CI=1.2-6.6, P=0.02) were associated with allograft loss, whereas arteritis (OR=0.5, 95% CI=0.2-1.2, P=0.11) and glomerulitis (OR=0.9, 95% CI=0.4-2.1, P=0.8) were not. Arteritis was associated with subsequent antibody-mediated rejection (OR=4.9, 95% CI=1.1-20.8, P=0.03), and glomerulitis was associated with the development of transplant glomerulopathy (OR=10.7, 95% CI=3.1-37.1, P<0.01). On the multivariate analysis, only patients with C4d and DSA were at risk of graft failure (OR=4.9, 95% CI=2.0-12.0, P<0.01) in the medium term.
TCMR with a humoral component has a worse prognosis when compared with pure TCMR. As such, it is important to test for alloantibody in cases of morphological TCMR to optimize patient management. Such cases might benefit from more aggressive immunotherapy.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Venous thromboembolism (VTE) occurs in 7%-40% of nephrotic patients. The risk of VTE depends on the severity and underlying cause of nephrotic syndrome. This study investigated the use of low-dose prophylactic anticoagulation to prevent VTE in patients with nephrotic syndrome caused by primary glomerulonephritis.
Since 2006, all patients presenting with nephrotic syndrome to Imperial College Kidney and Transplant Centre have been considered for treatment with a novel anticoagulation prophylaxis regimen. All cases of nephrotic syndrome secondary to primary membranous nephropathy, minimal-change disease, and FSGS over a 5-year period were retrospectively reviewed. Patients with serum albumin<2.0 g/dl received prophylactic-dose low-molecular-weight heparin or low-dose warfarin; patients with albumin levels of 2.0-3.0 g/dl received aspirin, 75 mg once daily. All thrombotic events and bleeding complications were recorded.
A total of 143 patients received the prophylactic anticoagulation regimen. Median follow-up was 154 weeks (range, 30-298 weeks). The cohort had features associated with a high risk of developing VTE; 40% of the cohort had an underlying diagnosis of membranous nephropathy, and the initial median serum albumin was 1.5 g/dl (range, 0.5-2.9 g/dl). No VTE occurred in patients established on prophylaxis for at least 1 week. VTE was diagnosed in 2 of 143 patients (1.39%) within the first week after presentation and starting prophylaxis. In both cases, it is unclear whether the thrombus had developed before or after the start of prophylaxis. One of 143 (0.69%) patients receiving prophylaxis was admitted urgently with gastrointestinal hemorrhage. Two of 143 patients (1.40%) had elective blood transfusions and procedures to manage occult gastrointestinal bleeding. No other bleeding events occurred in patients receiving prophylaxis.
This regimen of prophylactic antiplatelet or anticoagulant therapy appears effective in preventing VTE in nephrotic syndrome, with relatively few hemorrhagic complications.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The term C3 glomerulopathy describes renal disorders characterized by the presence of glomerular deposits composed of C3 in the absence of significant amounts of Ig. On the basis of electron microscopy appearance, subsets of C3 glomerulopathy include dense deposit disease (DDD) and C3 glomerulonephritis (C3GN). The full spectrum of histologic change observed in C3 glomerulopathy has yet to be defined and pathologic predictors of renal outcome within this patient population remain largely unknown. This study thus characterized a large C3 glomerulopathy cohort and identified clinicopathologic predictors of renal outcome.
All patients with kidney biopsies fulfilling criteria for C3 glomerulopathy from two quaternary renal centers within the United Kingdom and Ireland between 1992 and 2012 were retrospectively reviewed. We recorded histologic, demographic, and clinical data and determined predictors of ESRD using the Cox proportional hazards model.
Eighty patients with C3 glomerulopathy were identified: 21 with DDD and 59 with C3GN. Patients with DDD were younger, more likely to have low serum C3 levels, and more likely to have crescentic GN than patients with C3GN. Patients with C3GN were older and had more severe arteriolar sclerosis, glomerular sclerosis, and interstitial scarring than patients with DDD. Of 70 patients with available follow-up data, 20 (29%) progressed to ESRD after a median of 28 months. Age >16 years, DDD subtype, and crescentic GN were independent predictors of ESRD within the entire cohort. Renal impairment at presentation predicted ESRD only among patients with DDD.
Although detailed serologic and genetic data are lacking, this study nevertheless identifies important clinicopathologic distinctions between patients with DDD and C3GN. These include independent predictors of renal outcome. If replicated in other cohorts, these predictors could be used to stratify patients, enabling application of emerging mechanism-based therapies to patients at high risk for poor renal outcome.
No preview · Article · Oct 2013 · Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objectives Lupus nephritis (LN) is a serious complication of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). All current treatment regimens include oral steroids, which are associated with severe adverse events and long-term damage. We have piloted a steroid-avoiding protocol (rituxilup) for the treatment of biopsy-proven active International Society of Nephrology/Renal Pathology Society (ISN/RPS) class III, IV, or class V LN.
Methods We report the findings from the first 50 consecutive patients, treated with 2 doses of rituximab (1 g) and methyl prednisolone (500 mg) on days 1 and 15, and maintenance treatment of mycophenolate mofetil. Patients on maintenance steroids or with life-threatening SLE or requiring dialysis were excluded. Renal remission was defined as serum creatinine no greater than 15% above baseline; complete biochemical remission (CR) was defined as urine protein : creatinine ratio (PCR)<50 mg/mmol or partial remission (PR) if PCR>50 mg/mmol but non-nephrotic and >50% reduction.
Results A total of 45 (90%) patients achieved CR or PR by a median time of 37 weeks (range 4–200). Overall, 72% (n=36) achieved CR (median time 36 weeks (11–58)) and a further 18% (n=9) achieved persistent PR (median time 32 weeks (19–58)). By 52 weeks, CR and PR had been achieved in 52% (n=26) and 34% (n=17) respectively. In all, 12 relapses occurred in 11 patients, at a median time of 65.1 weeks (20–112) from remission. A total of 6/50 patients had systemic flares. Of the 45 responders, only 2 required >2 weeks of oral steroids. Adverse events were infrequent; 18% were admitted, 10% for an infective episode.
Conclusions The rituxilup cohort demonstrates that oral steroids can be safely avoided in the treatment of LN. If findings are confirmed, it could mark a step change in the approach to the treatment of LN.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2013 · Annals of the rheumatic diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The importance of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) matching in renal transplantation is well recognized, with HLA-DR compatibility having the greatest influence. De novo DQ donor-specific antibodies (DSAbs) are the predominant HLA class II DSAb after transplantation. The aim of this study was to establish the incidence and outcomes after the development of DQ DSAbs along with the impact of class II HLA mismatch on their development.
We retrospectively analyzed 505 patients who received a renal-alone transplant between 2005 and 2010. We excluded patients who received an ABO- and HLA-incompatible allograft, which we defined as those with a positive crossmatch or preformed DSAbs detected by single-antigen beads only.
Of 505 patients, 92 (18.2%) developed DSAbs, with 50 (54.3%) of these 92 patients having DQ DSAbs. Patients who developed DQ DSAbs were at significant risk for antibody-mediated rejection, transplant glomerulopathy, and allograft loss (P<0.0001). Of 505 patients, 108 (21.4%) were matched at both the DR and DQ loci, 284 (56.2%) were mismatched at both loci, 38 (7.5%) were matched at DR alone, and 75 (14.9%) were matched at DQ alone. Patients mismatched at both DR and DQ were at risk for developing class II DSAbs when compared with those mismatched at either DR or DQ alone, P=0.001, and were at risk for antibody-mediated rejection, P=0.001.
DQ DSAbs are associated with inferior allograft outcomes. This study shows the importance of establishing the DQ match before transplantation to define immunologic risk.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Immunosuppressive regimens for kidney transplantation which reduce the long-term burden of immunosuppression are attractive, but little data are available to judge the safety and efficacy of the different strategies used. We tested the hypothesis that the simple, cheap, regimen of alemtuzumab induction combined with tacrolimus monotherapy maintenance provided equivalent outcomes to the more commonly used combination of interleukin-2 receptor monoclonal antibody induction with tacrolimus and mycophenolate mofetil combination maintenance, both regimens using steroid withdrawal after 7 days.
One hundred twenty-three live or deceased donor renal transplant recipients were randomized 2:1 to receive alemtuzumab/tacrolimus or daclizumab/tacrolimus/mycophenolate. The primary endpoint was survival with a functioning graft at 1 year.
Both regimens produced equivalent, excellent outcomes with the primary outcome measure of 97.6% in the alemtuzumab arm and 95.1% in the daclizumab arm at 1 year (95% confidence interval of difference 6.9% to -1.7%) and at 2 years 92.6% and 95.1%. Rejection was less frequent in the alemtuzumab arm with 1- and 2-year rejection-free survival of 91.2% and 89.9% compared with 82.3% and 82.3% in the daclizumab arm. There were no significant differences in terms of the occurrence of opportunistic infections.
Alemtuzumab induction with tacrolimus maintenance monotherapy and short-course steroid use provides a simple, safe, and effective immunosuppressive regimen for renal transplantation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent interest has focused on wait listing patients without pretreating coronary artery disease to expedite transplantation. Our practice is to offer coronary revascularization before transplantation if indicated.
Between 2006 and 2009, 657 patients (427 men, 230 women; ages, 56.5 ± 9.94 years) underwent pretransplant assessment with coronary angiography. 573 of 657 (87.2%) patients were wait listed; 247 of 573 (43.1%) patients were transplanted during the follow-up period, 30.09 ± 11.67 months.
Patient survival for those not wait listed was poor, 83.2% and 45.7% at 1 and 3 years, respectively. In wait-listed patients, survival was 98.9% and 95.3% at 1 and 3 years, respectively. 184 of 657 (28.0%) patients were offered revascularization. Survival in patients (n = 16) declining revascularization was poor: 75% survived 1 year and 37.1% survived 3 years. Patients undergoing revascularization followed by transplantation (n = 51) had a 98.0% and 88.4% cardiac event-free survival at 1 and 3 years, respectively. Cardiac event-free survival for patients revascularized and awaiting deceased donor transplantation was similar: 94.0% and 90.0% at 1 and 3 years, respectively.
Our data suggest pre-emptive coronary revascularization is not only associated with excellent survival rates in patients subsequently transplanted, but also in those patients waiting on dialysis for a deceased donor transplant.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2011 · Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Kidney International aims to inform the renal researcher and practicing nephrologists on all aspects of renal research. Clinical and basic renal research, commentaries, The Renal Consult, Nephrology sans Frontieres, minireviews, reviews, Nephrology Images, Journal Club. Published weekly online and twice a month in print.
No preview · Article · Jul 2011 · Kidney International
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Antibody-mediated rejection (AMR) is associated with allograft loss. Identification of factors associated with poor outcome has not been extensively studied.
We retrospectively studied 469 patients who received a negative crossmatch renal transplant with alemtuzumab induction. Forty-eight of 469 (10.2%) patients were treated for AMR. Thirty of 48 (62.5%) of the cases fulfilled the Banff criteria for definite AMR, whereas 18 of 48 (37.5%) were categorized as suspicious for AMR (tissue injury with C4d staining or donor-specific antibodies [DSAbs]). Sensitization, high human leukocyte antigen, and -DR mismatch were risk factors for the development of AMR (P = 0.0016, 0.001, and 0.012, respectively).
Allograft survival was inferior in the AMR group (70.2%) compared with the nonrejector group (97.0%) (P<0.001). Forty-two of 48 (87.5%) of patients with acute AMR had DSAbs. Patients with CII DSAbs at the time of AMR, whether alone or in combination with CI DSAbs had the worst allograft survival (P = 0.014). Both the mean cumulative and immunodominant mean fluorescence index were higher in those patients who subsequently lost their grafts (P<0.001). Patients with diffuse C4d staining had inferior allograft survival than those with focal C4d or no staining (P = 0.02). There was no significant difference in survival by histological grade but a trend to inferior outcomes in those with vascular involvement (P = 0.06). Those patients who met the full Banff criteria had worse survival than those with suspicion for AMR only (P = 0.04).
This study identifies patients at risk of graft failure from AMR. These patients may benefit from newer therapeutic strategies including the use of eculizumab or bortezomib.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Rituximab (RTX) has been shown to be effective as an induction agent in anti-neutrophil cytoplasm antibody (ANCA)-associated vasculitis (AAV), but studies have been limited by short-term follow-up. We decided to investigate the long-term efficacy and safety of an RTX-based cyclophosphamide (CYP)-sparing regimen (CycLowVas) for renal AAV.
Consecutive patients with renal AAV presenting de novo or with a major relapse, except those with serum creatinine >500 μmol/L, previous treatment with RTX and pulmonary haemorrhage or cerebral vasculitis, were treated with two pulses of RTX 2 weeks apart and six fortnightly doses of CYP, as well as a reducing protocol of daily oral steroids. Maintenance was with low-dose steroids and azathioprine.
Twenty-three patients were treated. Median follow-up was 39 months, with 17 patients reaching >2 years of follow-up. All patients achieved clinical remission within 6 weeks. Three major and two minor relapses occurred in five patients at a median of 30 months, which were treated by re-dosing with RTX for major relapses and steroid increase alone for minor relapses. Adverse events included one severe drug reaction, four non-serious and one serious infective episodes in the first 3 months, one skin malignancy at 21 months and one death at 19 months not related to treatment or disease.
A RTX-based low-dose CYP regimen is effective at inducing long-term disease-free remission and may be the platform on which to develop a steroid-minimizing regimen to further decrease adverse events in the future.
Full-text · Article · Mar 2011 · Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Intracranial arterial calcification (IAC) is associated with ischemic stroke in the general population but this relationship has not been examined in hemodialysis patients. We examined the factors associated with IAC and its relationship with acute ischemic stroke in this population. We retrospectively studied 490 head computed tomographic scans from 2225 hemodialysis patients presenting with neurological symptoms at our center (October 2005-May 2009). Intracranial arterial calcification was graded using a validated scoring system. Multivariate regression was used to examine the factors associated with the presence of IAC, its severity, and its ability to predict acute ischemic stroke. Weibull's survival models analyzed the relationship between IAC severity and survival. Ninety-five percent of patients with ischemic stroke had IAC vs. 83% in the nonstroke group (P=0.02). Intracranial arterial calcification severity increased with age (P<0.001), hemodialysis vintage (P<0.001), serum phosphate (P<0.05), and major comorbidities. In patients with multiple computed tomographic scans during the study period, increased IAC severity at baseline was predictive of acute ischemic stroke (P=0.05) on logistic regression analysis. High-grade and not low-grade IAC was associated with worse survival (P=0.008). Intracranial arterial calcification is highly prevalent in hemodialysis patients, especially in those with acute ischemic stroke. Its severity is prognostically significant and associated with risk factors for vascular calcification and may confer a greater risk of acute ischemic stroke. The mechanisms underlying the high incidence of ischemic stroke in this patient group require further comprehensive study.
No preview · Article · Mar 2011 · Hemodialysis International
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The use of central venous catheters for long-term hemodialysis has been associated with increased mortality and high prevalence of infection and venous stenosis. However, because central venous catheters still constitute a significant proportion of vascular access in prevalent populations, even in the Fistula-First era, the authors examined the long-term patient outcomes and performance of this vascular access type to inform current clinical practice.
The authors conducted a retrospective cohort study of 433 patients on maintenance hemodialysis in a dialysis program from January 1999 through April 2008 all using twin-catheter Tesio Caths (TCs) (MedCOMP, Harleysville, Pennsylvania). Written and electronic records were examined with respect to laboratory indices as well as mortality, access-related infection, need for thrombolytic infusion, access revision and dialysis adequacy.
A total of 759 TCs were inserted with 552,035 catheter days follow-up. Thirty-six percent of insertions were in patients incident to dialysis (< 90 days). Mean single-pool Kt/V was 1.6 ± 0.3. Cumulative cohort survival rates were 85%, 72%, and 48% at 1, 2, and 5 years, respectively. No patients died as a result of lack of vascular access. Cumulative assisted primary access site patencies were 76%, 62%, and 42% at 1, 2, and 5 years, respectively. The prevalence of symptomatic central venous stenosis was 5%. Catheter-related bacteremia occurred at a rate of 0.34 per 1,000 catheter days.
Appropriate use of TCs with protocolized care can deliver effective long-term hemodialysis with good adequacy and rates of access-related infection approaching those seen with arteriovenous grafts.
No preview · Article · Mar 2011 · Journal of vascular and interventional radiology: JVIR
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Preemptive transplantation is ideal for patients with advanced chronic kidney disease (CKD). The practice has been to perform coronary angiography (CA) on all patients aged >50, all diabetics, and all patients with cardiac symptoms or disease with a view to revascularization before transplantation. Historically patients have delayed CA until established on renal replacement therapy due to concerns of precipitating the need for chronic dialysis. The objectives of this study were to establish the risk of contrast nephropathy in patients with advanced CKD who undergo screening CA, and to determine whether or not preemptive transplantation is achievable.
This retrospective analysis included 482 patients with stage IV/V CKD seen in West London predialysis clinics from 2004 to 2007. Seventy-six of 482 (15.8%) patients considered as potential transplant recipients met the authors' criteria for coronary angiography. Modification of Diet in Renal Disease (MDRD) GFR measurements were recorded for the 12 mo preceding and 12 mo following CA unless a defined endpoint was reached (transplantation, dialysis, or death).
Mean MDRD GFR at CA was 12.51 +/- 3.51 ml/min. The trend was not significantly different 6 mo pre- and postangiography. Cumulative dialysis-free survival was 89.1% 6 mo postangiography. Twenty-three of 76 (30.3%) patients had flow-limiting coronary artery disease. Twenty-five of 76 (32.9%) patients underwent transplantation with 22 of 25 (88.0%) transplants being performed preemptively.
The data suggest CA screening does not accelerate the decline in renal function for patients with advanced CKD, facilitating a safe preemptive transplant program.
Full-text · Article · Oct 2009 · Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology