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BACKGROUND - Outcomes in cases of adult accidental ABO incompatible cardiac transplantation are highly variable, with some patients suffering nearly immediate catastrophic antibody-mediated rejection while others (~37%-45%) survive. We hypothesize that these disparate outcomes could be influenced by variations in blood group antigen expression on allograft endothelium.
METHODOLOGY - Immunohistochemical stains for blood Group A antigen were performed on cardiac tissue from 18 blood Type A cadavers. Staining was evaluated by two distinct modalities: semiquantitative light microscopy, which measured the intensity of antigen expression on endothelium, and quantitative digital analysis, which determined the percentage of the total tissue section area staining positive for blood Group A antigen. These data were used to compute a Comprehensive Expression Index (CEI) of blood Group A antigen expression for each specimen.
RESULTS - Semiquantitative light microscopic examination determined that endothelium was stained with low intensity in four (22%) myocardial samples, intermediate intensity in five (28%) samples, and high intensity in nine (50%) samples. Quantitative digital analysis revealed a range in the percentage of total cross sectional area composed of blood Group A-positive signal (median, 2.69%; interquartile range, 1.68%-2.94%). Increased percentage of total cross sectional area composed of blood Group A-positive signal was positively associated with patient age (P=.0037). The CEI showed a broad range, with a median of 5.27 and an interquartile range of 2.92-8.22.
CONCLUSIONS - There are little data available regarding interindividual differences in blood Group A antigen expression in cardiac endothelium. Here, we report interindividual variation in endothelial expression of blood Group A antigen in 18 specimens. These variations may help to explain disparate outcomes in cases of accidental ABO incompatible cardiac transplantation in adults.
Published by Elsevier Inc.
Familial amyloid polyneuropathy is a rare, progressively disabling, and ultimately fatal inherited disease. Liver transplant is currently the only available treatment proven to halt the progression of familial amyloid polyneuropathy. We report a 31-year-old woman with familial amyloid polyneuropathy who received a living-donor liver transplant from her husband who was hepatitis C virus antibody-positive but HCV-RNA negative and ABO incompatible. Six years after the transplant, both donor and recipient have normal liver biochemistry results; no hepatitis C viral load has been detectable in the recipient. This is the first report of a living ABO-incompatible liver transplant from an anti-hepatitis C virus antibody-positive but an HCV-RNA negative donor. This experience suggests that the use of an anti-hepatitis C virus antibody-positive hepatic graft is possible in select circumstances.
In children with sickle cell disease (SCD), primary and secondary prevention of strokes require indefinite regular blood transfusion therapy. The risks associated with repeated transfusions include alloimmunization and increased donor exposure. The Charles Drew Program is a directed blood donor program designed to lower donor exposure, decreasing the associated complications of transfusion; however, no evidence exists demonstrating the magnitude of the benefit to the recipient. Further, the use of extended red blood cell (RBC) antigen matching for C, E, and K has been well documented in a clinical trial setting but not extensively evaluated in a standard care setting. The goal of this study is to assess the effectiveness in reducing alloimmunization when matching for C, E, and K and the magnitude of the decrease in donor exposure in a directed blood donor program. The rate of alloimmunization and reduction of donor exposure were determined during the course of 1 year in a cohort of children with SCD who received regular directed donor blood transfusions. A total of 24 recipients were in the program, 16 females and 8 males, 4 to 20 years of age. During 2008, alloimmunization was 0 percent and donor exposure was reduced by 20 percent, compared with usual care. Extended RBC antigen matching has the same benefit as in a clinical trial setting for patients with SCD receiving blood transfusion therapy. Despite significant effort, we only achieved a modest decrease in donor exposure and cannot determine the immediate benefit of a directed blood donor program.