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The presence of a CD4(+) CD25(high) CD45RO(+) CD127(high) T cell population correlates with the clinical status of kidney transplant recipients

By Laure Vallotton, Laura Codarri, Donatella Ciuffreda, Karine Hadaya, Leo Buhler, Jean-Pierre Venetz, Giuseppe Pantaleo and Manuel Pascual

Abstract

Introduction: Recent data have suggested that a population of CD4+ CD25high T cells, phenotypically characterized by the expression of CD45RO and CD127, is significantly expanded in stable liver and kidney transplant recipients and represents alloreactive T cells. We analyzed this putative new alloreactive cellular marker in various groups of kidney transplant recipients. Patients & methods: Flow cytometry was used to analyze the expression of CD25, CD45RO and CD127 on peripheral CD4+ T cells. Of 73 kidney transplant recipients, 59 had a stable graft function under standard immunosuppressive therapy (IS), 5 had biopsy-proven chronic humoral rejection (CHR), 8 were stable under minimal IS and one was an operationally "tolerant" patient who had discontinued IS for more than 3 years. Sixty-six healthy subjects (HS) were studied as controls. Results: Overall, the alloreactive T cell population was found to be significantly increased in the 73 kidney recipients (mean ± SE: 15.03 ± 1.04% of CD4+ CD25high T cells) compared to HS (5.93 ± 0.39%) (p<0.001). In the 5 patients with CHR, this population was highly expanded (31.33 ± 4.16%), whereas it was comparable to HS in the 8 stable recipients receiving minimal IS (6.12 ± 0.86%), in 4 patients who had been switched to sirolimus (4.21 ± 0.53%) as well as in the unique "tolerant" recipient (4.69%). Intermediate levels (15.84 ± 0.93%) were found in the 55 recipients with stable graft function on standard CNI-based IS. Regulatory T cells, defined as CD4+CD25high FoxP3+ CD127low, were found to be significantly reduced in all recipients except in those with minimal or no IS, and this reduction was particularly striking in recipients with CHR. Conclusion: After kidney transplantation, an alloreactive T cell population was found to be significantly expanded and it correlates with the clinical status of the recipients. Interestingly, in stable patients with minimal (or no) IS as well as in patients on sirolimus, alloreactive T cells were comparable the healthy controls. Measuring circulating CD4+CD25high CD45RO+ CD127high T cells may become a useful monitoring tool after transplantation

Topics: ;
Year: 2008
OAI identifier: oai:serval.unil.ch:BIB_F81D421E7A36
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