Graft Pre-conditioning by Peri-Operative Perfusion of Kidney Allografts With Rabbit Anti-human T-lymphocyte Globulin Results in Improved Kidney Graft Function in the Early Post-transplantation Period-a Prospective, Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial

Front Immunol. 2018 Aug 24;9:1911. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2018.01911. eCollection 2018.


Introduction: Although prone to a higher degree of ischemia reperfusion injury (IRI), the use of extended criteria donor (ECD) organs has become reality in transplantation. We therefore postulated that peri-operative perfusion of renal transplants with anti-human T-lymphocyte globulin (ATLG) ameliorates IRI and results in improved graft function. Methods: We performed a randomized, single-blinded, placebo-controlled trial involving 50 kidneys (KTx). Prior to implantation organs were perfused and incubated with ATLG (AP) (n = 24 kidney). Control organs (CP) were perfused with saline only (n = 26 kidney). Primary endpoint was defined as graft function reflected by serum creatinine at day 7 post transplantation (post-tx). Results: AP-KTx recipients illustrated significantly better graft function at day 7 post-tx as reflected by lower creatinine levels, whereas no treatment effect was observed after 12 months surveillance. During the early hospitalization phase, 16 of the 26 CP-KTx patients required dialysis during the first 7 days post-tx, whereas only 10 of the 24 AP-KTx patients underwent dialysis. No treatment-specific differences were detected for various lymphocytes subsets in the peripheral blood of patients. Additionally, mRNA analysis of 0-h biopsies post incubation with ATLG revealed no changes of intragraft inflammatory expression patterns between AP and CP organs. Conclusion: We here present the first clinical study on peri-operative organ perfusion with ATLG illustrating improved graft function in the early period post kidney transplantation. Clinical Trial Registration:, NCT03377283.

Keywords: ATLG; RCT; ischemia reperfusion injury; kidney transplantation; organ preservation.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Animals
  • Antilymphocyte Serum / administration & dosage*
  • Delayed Graft Function / metabolism
  • Delayed Graft Function / pathology
  • Delayed Graft Function / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Graft Enhancement, Immunologic / methods*
  • Graft Survival / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Rabbits
  • Time Factors


  • Antilymphocyte Serum

Associated data