Background: Bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome (BOS) is a major limitation in the long-term survival of lung transplant recipients (LTRs). However, the risk factors in the development of BOS remain undetermined. We conducted an international cohort study of LTRs to assess whether Aspergillus colonization with large or small conidia is a risk factor for the development of BOS.
Methods: Consecutive LTRs from January 2005 to December 2008 were evaluated. Rates of BOS and associated risk factors were recorded at 4 years. International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation criteria were used to define fungal and other infections. A Cox proportional-hazards-model was constructed to assess the association between Aspergillus colonization and the development of BOS controlling for confounders.
Results: A total of 747 LTRs were included. The cumulative incidence of BOS at 4 years after transplant was 33% (250 of 747). Additionally, 22% of LTRs experienced Aspergillus colonization after transplantation. Aspergillus colonization with either large (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.6, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.3-1.2, p = 0.12) or small conidia (HR = 0.9, 95% CI = 0.6-1.4, p = 0.74) was not associated with the development of BOS. Factors associated with increased risk of development of BOS were the male gender (HR = 1.4, 95% CI = 1.1-1.8, p = 0.02) and episodes of acute rejection (1-2 episodes, HR = 1.5, 95% CI = 1.1-2.1, p = 0.014; 3-4 episodes, HR = 1.6, 95% CI = 1.0-2.6, p = 0.036; >4 episodes, HR = 2.2, 95% CI = 1.1-4.3, p = 0.02), whereas tacrolimus use was associated with reduced risk of BOS (HR = 0.6, 95% CI = 0.5-0.9, p = 0.007).
Conclusions: We conclude from this large multicenter cohort of lung transplant patients, that Aspergillus colonization with large or small conidia did not show an association with the development of BOS.
Keywords: BOS; aspergillus; colonization; lung transplantation; risk factors.
Copyright © 2019 International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.