Incidence, Risk Factors for and Outcomes of Transplant-Associated Thrombotic Microangiopathy

Br J Haematol. 2020 Jun;189(6):1171-1181. doi: 10.1111/bjh.16457. Epub 2020 Mar 2.


Transplant-associated thrombotic microangiopathy (TA-TMA) is a complication of allogeneic transplantation (allo-HCT). The incidence and risk factors associated with TA-TMA are not well known. A retrospective analysis from the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) was conducted including patients receiving allo-HCT between 2008 and 2016, with the primary objective of evaluating the incidence of TA-TMA. Secondary objectives included identification of risk factors associated with TA-TMA, and the impact of TA-TMA on overall survival and the need for renal replacement therapy (RRT). Among 23,665 allo-HCT recipients, the 3-year cumulative incidence of TA-TMA was 3%. Variables independently-associated with increased incidence of TA-TMA included female sex, prior autologous transplant, primary disease (acute lymphoblastic leukaemia and severe aplastic anaemia), donor type (mismatched or unrelated donor), conditioning intensity (myeloablative), GVHD prophylaxis (sirolimus + calcineurin inhibitor), pre-transplant kidney dysfunction and acute GVHD (time-varying effect). TA-TMA was associated with higher mortality (HR = 3·1, 95% Confidence Interval [CI] = 2·8-16·3) and RRT requirement (HR = 7·1, 95% CI = 5·7-311·6). This study provides epidemiologic data on TA-TMA and its impact on transplant outcomes. Increased awareness of the risk factors will enable providers to be vigilant of this uncommon but serious transplant complication. The results will also provide benchmarking for future study designs and comparisons.

Keywords: TA-TMA; allo-HCT; allogeneic transplantation; thrombotic microangiopathy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Twin Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Allografts
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Renal Replacement Therapy*
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Factors
  • Survival Rate
  • Thrombotic Microangiopathies* / etiology
  • Thrombotic Microangiopathies* / mortality
  • Thrombotic Microangiopathies* / therapy
  • Twins*
  • Unrelated Donors*