Value of posttransplant antibody tests in the evaluation of patients with renal graft dysfunction

J. C. Scornik, G. Guerra, J. D. Schold, T. R. Srinivas, D. Dragun, H. U. Meier-Kriesche

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Posttransplant HLA antibodies correlate with C4d positive rejection and decreased graft survival. However, the diagnostic value of various antibody tests in the management of patients presenting with graft dysfunction is uncertain. Whether all or some patients should be tested, how often, what antibodies to test for and how to interpret results in presensitized or transfused patients, are issues still unresolved. We tested for HLA and non-HLA antibodies by flow cytometry assays in 103 consecutive patients with graft dysfunction. The results show that: (1) C4d positive rejection was diagnosed in 75% of patients who developed posttransplant HLA antibodies, but only in 2% in antibody negative patients. (2) The correlation existed for donor specific IgG antibodies but not for IgM or nondonor specific IgG antibodies. (3) Weak antibody reactivity required confirmation by alternative testing as there were false positive results. (4) Posttransplant transfusions did not induce de novo HLA antibodies. (5) Negative antibody results were unlikely to turn positive after several months of follow-up. (6) Antibodies to the angiotensin II type 1 receptor, HLA-DP and MICA did not correlate with C4d+ rejection. We conclude that testing for posttransplant HLA antibodies is critical in narrowing the diagnostic alternatives in patients with graft dysfunction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1808-1814
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Transplantation
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Angiotensin receptor antibodies
  • C4d positive rejection
  • Kidney graft dysfunction
  • MICA antibodies
  • Posttransplant HLA antibodies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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