The effect of donor age, recipient age, and HLA match on immunologic graft survival in cadaver renal transplant recipients

Transplantation. 1992 Jan;53(1):55-9. doi: 10.1097/00007890-199201000-00010.


We retrospectively analyzed 526 primary cadaver recipients transplanted at a single center to identify pretransplant variables that predict long-term survival with multivariate analysis. All recipients received at least three random blood transfusions and were treated under a quadruple-therapy protocol consisting of ALG, azathioprine, prednisone, and cyclosporine. Of 526 consecutive transplants, 86 grafts were lost from acute or chronic rejection. Thirteen grafts were lost for nonimmunologic reasons and 35 recipients died with a functioning graft. A total of 273 patients (52%) experienced at least one episode of acute rejection. Donor age ranged from 3 to 64 years, with 62% of donors less than 30 years of age and 9% of donors over 50 years of age. Donor age was not predictive of long-term graft survival and neither was the difference between donor and recipient age. Recipient age was predictive of subsequent immunologic graft less, with younger recipients at greater risk (P = 0.011). The rate of first rejection was also inversely related to recipient age, with younger recipients rejecting earlier (P = 0.0001). The degree of DR mismatch was the only other significant predictor of long-term graft success (P = 0.013). Transplant survival correlated with the degree of DR mismatch: 2 DR mismatch was the worst, 1 DR mismatch was intermediate and 0 DR mismatch was the best (P = 0.02). A, B, AB, and BDR did not influence long-term graft outcome. In our center, donor age does not predict graft failure. Younger recipients have a higher rate of early rejection and, combined with a poor DR match, are at higher risk for long-term graft failure.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Cadaver
  • Graft Survival*
  • HLA Antigens / analysis*
  • HLA-DR Antigens / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Retrospective Studies


  • HLA Antigens
  • HLA-DR Antigens