ABO-incompatible renal transplantation in developing world - crossing the immunological (and mental) barrier

Indian J Nephrol. Mar-Apr 2016;26(2):113-8. doi: 10.4103/0971-4065.159557.


ABO incompatibility has been considered as an important immunological barrier for renal transplantation. With the advent of effective preconditioning protocols, it is now possible to do renal transplants across ABO barrier. We hereby present a single center retrospective analysis of all consecutive ABOi renal transplants performed from November 2011 to August 2014. Preconditioning protocol consisted of rituximab, plasmapheresis and intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) and maintenance immunosuppression consisted of tacrolimus, mycophenolate sodium, and prednisolone. The outcome of these ABOi transplants was compared with all other consecutive ABO-compatible (ABOc) renal transplants performed during same time. Twenty ABOi renal transplants were performed during the study period. Anti-blood group antibody titer varied from 1:2 to 1:512. Patient and graft survival was comparable between ABOi and ABOc groups. Biopsy proven acute rejection rate was 15% in ABOi group, which was similar to ABOc group (16.29%). There were no antibody-mediated rejections in ABOi group. The infection rate was also comparable. We conclude that the short-term outcome of ABOi and ABOc transplants is comparable. ABOi transplants should be promoted in developing countries to expand the donor pool.

Keywords: ABO incompatible; ABOi; India; developing world; renal transplantation.