BACKGROUND: Renal transplantation is currently the prevalent therapy for most patients with end-stage renal disease. No clinical markers for such rejection have been universally accepted. We aimed to investigate the possibility of use of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I (ABC) on peripheral blood CD3+/CD8+ T lymphocytes as a marker of acute rejection.
METHODS: For recipients undergoing renal transplantation from September 2007 to November 2008, peripheral blood samples were obtained pretransplantation and at days 3 and 7 posttransplantation when the patients were still hospitalized and at weeks 2 and 3 and months 1, 2, 3, and 6 posttransplantation. For patients with fever, lumbodynia, gross hematuria, or oliguria after transplantation, blood samples were collected immediately before and at days 3 and 7 after the administration of anti-inflammatory regents. The level of HLA class I (ABC) on peripheral-blood CD3+/CD8+ T lymphocytes was measured on flow cytometry.
RESULTS: For the 79 transplant recipients, the level of HLA class I (ABC) on peripheral-blood CD3+/CD8+ T lymphocytes was consistently elevated during the first 3 weeks after transplantation, declined gradually to pretransplantation levels, then tapered off and remained stable. Patients experiencing acute rejection (AR) or not after transplantation did not differ in level of HLA class I (ABC) up to 6-month follow-up, except at days 14 and 21 after transplantation, when the level was higher for patients experiencing AR (P<0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: Upregulation of HLA class I (ABC) on peripheral-blood CD3+/CD8+ T lymphocytes could be used as an accurate and reliable predictor of AR after renal transplantation.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/dianzheng_zhang/8/