Kidney allograft failure in the steroid-free immunosuppression era: A matched case-control study

Mohamad M. Alkadi, Jim Kim, Meredith J. Aull, Joseph E. Schwartz, John R. Lee, Anthony Watkins, Jun B. Lee, Darshana M. Dadhania, Surya V. Seshan, David Serur, Sandip Kapur, Manikkam Suthanthiran, Choli Hartono, Thangamani Muthukumar

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1 Citation (Scopus)


We studied the causes and predictors of death-censored kidney allograft failure among 1670 kidney recipients transplanted at our center in the corticosteroid-free maintenance immunosuppression era. As of January 1, 2012, we identified 137 recipients with allograft failure; 130 of them (cases) were matched 1-1 for recipient age, calendar year of transplant, and donor type with 130 recipients with functioning grafts (controls). Median time to allograft failure was 29 months (interquartile range: 18-51). Physician-validated and biopsy-confirmed categories of allograft failure were as follows: acute rejection (21%), glomerular disease (19%), transplant glomerulopathy (13%), interstitial fibrosis tubular atrophy (10%), and polyomavirus-associated nephropathy (7%). Graft failures were attributed to medical conditions in 21% and remained unresolved in 9%. Donor race, donor age, human leukocyte antigen mismatches, serum creatinine, urinary protein, acute cellular rejection, acute antibody-mediated rejection, BK viremia, and CMV viremia were associated with allograft failure. Independent predictors of allograft failure were acute cellular rejection (odds ratio: 18.31, 95% confidence interval: 5.28-63.45) and urine protein ≥1 g/d within the first year post-transplantation (5.85, 2.37-14.45). Serum creatinine ≤1.5 mg/dL within the first year post-transplantation reduced the odds (0.29, 0.13-0.64) of allograft failure. Our study has identified modifiable risk factors to reduce the burden of allograft failure.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere13117
JournalClinical Transplantation
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2017
Externally publishedYes



  • biopsy
  • graft rejection
  • immunosuppression
  • polyomavirus
  • risk factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transplantation

Cite this

Alkadi, M. M., Kim, J., Aull, M. J., Schwartz, J. E., Lee, J. R., Watkins, A., Lee, J. B., Dadhania, D. M., Seshan, S. V., Serur, D., Kapur, S., Suthanthiran, M., Hartono, C., & Muthukumar, T. (2017). Kidney allograft failure in the steroid-free immunosuppression era: A matched case-control study. Clinical Transplantation, 31(11), [e13117].