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04 June 2019 : Original article  

The Effect of Donor Age and Recipient Characteristics on Renal Outcomes in Patients Receiving Prolonged-Release Tacrolimus After Liver Transplantation: Post-Hoc Analyses of the DIAMOND Study

Pavel Trunečka1ABDE*, Jürgen Klempnauer2ABDE, Wolf Otto Bechstein3ABDE, Jacques Pirenne4ABDE, William Bennet5ABDE, Alexey Zhao6ABDE, Helena Isoniemi7ABDE, Lionel Rostaing8ABDE, Utz Settmacher9ABDE, Christian Mönch310ABDE, Malcolm Brown11ADE, Nasrullah Undre12ADE, Gbenga Kazeem1213ACE, Giuseppe Tisone14ABDE

DOI: 10.12659/AOT.913103

Ann Transplant 2019; 24:319-327


BACKGROUND: The DIAMOND study of de novo liver transplant patients showed that prolonged-release tacrolimus exposure in the acute post-transplant period maintained renal function over 24 weeks of treatment. To assess these findings further, we performed a post-hoc analysis in patients according to baseline kidney function, Model for End-stage Liver Disease [MELD] scores, and donor age.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Patients received prolonged-release tacrolimus (initial-dose, Arm 1: 0.2 mg/kg/day, Arm 2: 0.15–0.175 mg/kg/day, Arm 3: 0.2 mg/kg/day delayed until Day 5), mycophenolate mofetil and 1 steroid bolus. Arms 2 and 3 also received basiliximab. The recommended tacrolimus target trough levels to Day 42 post-transplantation were 5–15 ng/mL in all arms. In this post-hoc analysis, change in renal outcome, based on estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), Modified Diet in Renal Disease-4 (MDRD4), values from baseline to Week 24 ­post-transplantation, were assessed according to baseline patient factors: eGFR (≥60 and ˂60 mL/min/1.73 m²), MELD score (˂25 and ≥25) and donor age (˂50 and ≥50 years).

RESULTS: Baseline characteristics were comparable (Arms 1–3: n=283, n=287, n=274, respectively). Patients with baseline renal function, eGFR ≥60 mL/min/1.73 m², experienced a decrease in eGFR in all tacrolimus treatment arms. In patients with lower baseline renal function (eGFR ˂60 mL/min/1.73 m²), an advantage for renal function was observed with both the early lower-dose and delayed higher-dose tacrolimus regimens compared with the early introduction of higher-dose tacrolimus. At Week 24, renal function was higher in the early-lower tacrolimus arm with older donors, and the delayed higher-dose tacrolimus arm with younger donors, both compared with early higher-dose tacrolimus.

CONCLUSIONS: Pre-transplantation factors, such as renal function and donor age, could guide the choice of prolonged-release tacrolimus regimen following liver transplantation.

Keywords: Glomerular Filtration Rate, Immunosuppressive Agents, Liver Transplantation, Tacrolimus, Age Factors, Aged, Delayed-Action Preparations, Graft Rejection, Kidney, Kidney Failure, Chronic, Kidney Function Tests, Middle Aged, Mycophenolic Acid, Tissue Donors, transplant recipients


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Annals of Transplantation eISSN: 2329-0358
Annals of Transplantation eISSN: 2329-0358