Background: Immunosuppressive regimens with the fewest possible toxic effects are desirable for transplant recipients. This study evaluated the efficacy and relative toxic effects of four immunosuppressive regimens.
Methods: We randomly assigned 1645 renal-transplant recipients to receive standard-dose cyclosporine, mycophenolate mofetil, and corticosteroids, or daclizumab induction, mycophenolate mofetil, and corticosteroids in combination with low-dose cyclosporine, low-dose tacrolimus, or low-dose sirolimus. The primary end point was the estimated glomerular filtration rate (GFR), as calculated by the Cockcroft-Gault formula, 12 months after transplantation. Secondary end points included acute rejection and allograft survival.
Results: The mean calculated GFR was higher in patients receiving low-dose tacrolimus (65.4 ml per minute) than in the other three groups (range, 56.7 to 59.4 ml per minute). The rate of biopsy-proven acute rejection was lower in patients receiving low-dose tacrolimus (12.3%) than in those receiving standard-dose cyclosporine (25.8%), low-dose cyclosporine (24.0%), or low-dose sirolimus (37.2%). Allograft survival differed significantly among the four groups (P=0.02) and was highest in the low-dose tacrolimus group (94.2%), followed by the low-dose cyclosporine group (93.1%), the standard-dose cyclosporine group (89.3%), and the low-dose sirolimus group (89.3%). Serious adverse events were more common in the low-dose sirolimus group than in the other groups (53.2% vs. a range of 43.4 to 44.3%), although a similar proportion of patients in each group had at least one adverse event during treatment (86.3 to 90.5%).
Conclusions: A regimen of daclizumab, mycophenolate mofetil, and corticosteroids in combination with low-dose tacrolimus may be advantageous for renal function, allograft survival, and acute rejection rates, as compared with regimens containing daclizumab induction plus either low-dose cyclosporine or low-dose sirolimus or with standard-dose cyclosporine without induction. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00231764 [ClinicalTrials.gov].).
Copyright 2007 Massachusetts Medical Society.