Background: Acute allograft rejection after HLA desensitization is common early post-transplant but the sequence of histopathologic changes leading to graft dysfunction has not been well defined. Methods: We evaluated the early pathogenesis and sequence of antibody-mediated graft damage of 35 desensitized living donor kidney recipients by studying the course of biopsies taken in the very early post-transplant period (<1 month). Results: A total of 14 of the 35 patients met criteria for acute antibody-mediated rejection (AMR). In these patients, the chronologic sequence of pathologic changes was C4d peritubular capillary deposition, acute tubular injury, and peritubular capillaritis, followed by glomerulitis and interstitial inflammation. Classic AMR lesions occurred early, followed by mononuclear cellular infiltration, which comprised CD4 and CD8 T cells and monocytes. Development of graft dysfunction in most patients occurred concurrently with the emergence of graft cellular infiltration, rather than at the earlier time of antibody deposition as detected via C4d deposition. Conclusion: These data provide novel insight into the sequence of pathologic changes in patients with AMR post-transplant after HLA desensitization.
- Renal transplant
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