BACKGROUND - In cardiac transplant recipients, the development of antibodies to the endothelial intermediate filament protein vimentin (antivimentin antibodies, AVA) has been associated with rejection and poor outcomes. However, the incidence of these antibodies prior to transplantation and their association with early rejection has not been investigated.
METHODS - Pre-transplant serum was analyzed from 50 patients who underwent de novo cardiac transplant at Johns Hopkins Hospital from 2004 to 2012. Demographic, one-yr rejection, and survival data were obtained from the transplant database.
RESULTS - The incidence of pre-transplant AVA was 34%. AVA-positive patients were younger (p = 0.03), and there was an a trend toward incidence in females (p = 0.08). Demographic data were similar among both groups. AVA positivity did not predict rejection in the first year post-transplant. There was no difference in rejection-free graft survival (53 vs. 52%, p = 0.85) at one yr. Similarly, there was no difference in graft survival at one yr (82 vs. 88%, p = 0.56) or graft survival at a median follow-up of 23 and 26 months, respectively (76 vs. 85%, p = 0.41).
CONCLUSIONS - AVA is common in the cardiac pre-transplant population with a higher incidence in the young. The presence of detectable AVA did not correlate with early post-transplant rejection or graft survival.
© 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.