BACKGROUND - Some familial amyloidotic polyneuropathy (FAP) patients show the post-transplant progression of the clinical symptoms. Although the presence of recipient-derived cells in transplanted livers has been reported, no studies investigating the functional significance of this post-transplant chimerism in transplanted FAP patients were performed. The aims of this study were to evaluate amyloidogenic transthyretin (ATTR) production of recipient-derived cells and the relationship between the protein from recipient-derived cells and the progression of FAP symptoms after liver transplantation (LT).
METHODS - Seven FAP ATTR Val30Met patients who underwent LT were included in this study. In one male patient with sex-mismatched donor, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) method was performed on a liver biopsy sample using DNA probes for visualizing X and Y chromosomes to detect the recipient-derived cells. In three patients including the FISH-analysed patient, ATTR mRNA expression in transplanted livers was evaluated by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-restriction fragment length polymorphism method and realtime quantitative reverse transcription-PCR. In five of the seven patients, ATTR in serum protein expression was measured by mass spectrometry.
RESULTS - One FAP patient has 3.1% recipient-derived cells in the transplanted liver. The ATTR mRNA was not expressed in any of the three transplanted livers. The ATTR was not detected in any sera of the sampled patients.
CONCLUSION - Although the FAP patient had recipient-derived cells in the transplanted liver, the recipient-derived cells did not contribute to the production of ATTR in our specific case. The effect of recipient-derived cells on the post-transplant progression of FAP symptoms may be negligible.