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Increase in CD8+CD158a+ T Cells in Kidney Graft Blood is Associated with Better Renal Function

Abelardo Caballero, Eulalia Palma, Pedro Ruiz-Esteban, Eugenia Sola, Verónica López, Laura Fuentes, Edisson Rudas, Lara Perea, Domingo Hernández

(Department of Immunology, Carlos Haya Regional University Hospital, Institute of Biomedical Research in Malaga (IBIMA), University of Malaga, Malaga, Spain)

Ann Transplant 2017; 22:35-41

DOI: 10.12659/AOT.900680

Published: 2017-01-24

BACKGROUND: Studies of liver and heart transplant patients have shown a gradual reconstruction of the CD8 KIR2D+ T cell subpopulations, measured in peripheral blood (PB), associated with better graft acceptance. The kinetics of these populations in kidney transplants, however, is still poorly understood, especially given the lack of studies of blood samples from the kidney graft.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Flow cytometry was used to measure CD8+CD158a/b/e T cells in 69 kidney transplant patients who had stable renal function during follow-up. Measurements were made at 3, 6, and 12 months post-transplantation in graft capillary blood extracted by fine needle aspiration puncture (FNAP) and in PB.
RESULTS: No progressive increase was found in the PB subpopulations. However, the CD8+CD158a+ subsets increased significantly at 12 months in the graft blood versus the PB samples (3.91±4.59 vs. 2.84±4.71; p=0.021). The ratio of the percentage of CD8+CD158a+ cells in graft blood compared to PB at 12 months was associated with better renal function in those patients with a ratio ≥3 (66.6±14.53 vs. 55.7±21.6; p=0.032).
CONCLUSIONS: An increased ratio of CD8+CD158a+ cells, measured by flow cytometry, between graft blood and PB was associated with improved renal function.

Keywords: Biopsy, Fine-Needle, Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplantation, Receptors, KIR