Long-Term Outcomes in Belatacept- Versus Cyclosporine-Treated Recipients of Extended Criteria Donor Kidneys: Final Results From BENEFIT-EXT, a Phase III Randomized Study

Am J Transplant. 2016 Nov;16(11):3192-3201. doi: 10.1111/ajt.13830. Epub 2016 Jun 9.


In the Belatacept Evaluation of Nephroprotection and Efficacy as First-Line Immunosuppression Trial-Extended Criteria Donors (BENEFIT-EXT), extended criteria donor kidney recipients were randomized to receive belatacept-based (more intense [MI] or less intense [LI]) or cyclosporine-based immunosuppression. In prior analyses, belatacept was associated with significantly better renal function compared with cyclosporine. In this prospective analysis of the intent-to-treat population, efficacy and safety were compared across regimens at 7 years after transplant. Overall, 128 of 184 belatacept MI-treated, 138 of 175 belatacept LI-treated and 108 of 184 cyclosporine-treated patients contributed data to these analyses. Hazard ratios (HRs) comparing time to death or graft loss were 0.915 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.625-1.339; p = 0.65) for belatacept MI versus cyclosporine and 0.927 (95% CI 0.634-1.356; p = 0.70) for belatacept LI versus cyclosporine. Mean estimated GFR (eGFR) plus or minus standard error at 7 years was 53.9 ± 1.9, 54.2 ± 1.9, and 35.3 ± 2.0 mL/min per 1.73 m2 for belatacept MI, belatacept LI and cyclosporine, respectively (p < 0.001 for overall treatment effect). HRs comparing freedom from death, graft loss or eGFR <20 mL/min per 1.73 m2 were 0.754 (95% CI 0.536-1.061; p = 0.10) for belatacept MI versus cyclosporine and 0.706 (95% CI 0.499-0.998; p = 0.05) for belatacept LI versus cyclosporine. Acute rejection rates and safety profiles of belatacept- and cyclosporine-based treatment were similar. De novo donor-specific antibody incidence was lower for belatacept (p ≤ 0.0001). Relative to cyclosporine, belatacept was associated with similar death and graft loss and improved renal function at 7 years after transplant and had a safety profile consistent with previous reports.

Keywords: clinical research/practice; clinical trial; donors and donation: deceased; donors and donation: donation after circulatory death (DCD); donors and donation: extended criteria; fusion proteins and monoclonal antibodies: belatacept; immunosuppressant; kidney transplantation/nephrology.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase III
  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abatacept / therapeutic use*
  • Cyclosporine / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate
  • Graft Rejection / prevention & control*
  • Graft Survival
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / surgery*
  • Kidney Function Tests
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors


  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Abatacept
  • Cyclosporine