One hundred recipients of first cadaveric kidney transplants were treated with three different immunosuppressive regimens: (1) conventional immunosuppression, (2) CsA alone, and (3) low-dose CsA in combination with low-dose prednisone, with rapid adjustment to give CsA whole blood trough levels of 300 to 800 ng/mL. One-year graft survival in the aza + pred group was 76%, and in the CsA alone group 75%. Graft survival at two and six months in the CsA-pred group was 94%. The dose of CsA in the CsA-pred group in the first two months posttransplant was only about half that given to the CsA-alone group. Surprisingly, the reduction in the CsA dose also reduced the number of methylprednisolone pulses given for treating rejection by greater than 50%. The incidence of nephrotoxicity and extrarenal side effects also fell considerably. Withdrawal of prednisone in the CsA-pred group after five months led to reversible rejection in two cases. In conclusion, (1) the rapid reduction in the CsA dosage is beneficial and has no drawbacks, and (2) our guidelines for withdrawing prednisone (timing of withdrawal, rate of reduction in dosage) still need further refinement.