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Concept: Kidney transplantation

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OBJECTIVES: To determine the mycophenolic acid pharmacokinetic profile early after transplant in Iranian kidney graft recipients. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A cross-sectional study was performed during 6 months in 31 patients who recently had kidney transplant and received fixed doses of mycophenolate mofetil (2 g/d). The plasma levels of mycophenolic acid were determined by high performance liquid chromatography. RESULTS: The mean first mycophenolic acid peak level was 10 ± 5 mg/L. The mean mycophenolic acid area under the curve was 26 ± 19 mgh/L and apparent clearance was 57 ± 55 L/h. The mycophenolic acid area under the curve values of only 8 patients (26%) were within the therapeutic range (30-60 mgh/L). The first, second, and third mycophenolic acid peak levels correlated significantly with mycophenolic acid area under the curve (P < .05). Mycophenolic acid concentration at 10 hours had the highest correlation with mycophenolic acid area under the curve (r=0.962; P < .05). No statistically significant differences were evident in the mean mycophenolic acid area under the curve between men and women. CONCLUSIONS: There was a high degree of variation between different patients in mycophenolic acid pharmacokinetics early after kidney transplant.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Statistics, Statistical significance, High performance liquid chromatography, Kidney transplantation, Pharmacokinetics, Mycophenolic acid, Mycophenolate mofetil

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BK virus (BKV) is a non-enveloped DNA virus of the polyomaviridae family that causes an interstitial nephritis in immunosuppressed patients. BKV nephropathy is now a leading cause of chronic kidney disease and early allograft failure following kidney transplantation. It is also known to cause renal disease with a progressive decline in kidney function in non-renal solid organ transplant (NRSOT) recipients, although the disease may not be recognized nor its impact appreciated in this patient population. In this report, we review the existing literature to highlight our current understanding of its incidence in NRSOT populations, the approaches to diagnosis and the potential treatment options.

Concepts: Chronic kidney disease, Kidney, Nephrology, Organ, Organ transplant, Kidney transplantation, JC virus, Polyomavirus

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Clinical and experimental studies have shown that sodium glucose co-transporter 2 inhibitors (SGLT2i) contribute to the prevention of diabetic kidney disease progression. In order to clarify its pharmacological effects on the molecular mechanisms underlying the development of diabetic kidney disease, we administered different doses of the SGLT2i, ipragliflozin, to type 2 diabetic mice. A high-dose ipragliflozin treatment for 8 weeks lowered blood glucose levels and reduced urinary albumin excretion. High- and low-dose ipragliflozin both inhibited renal and glomerular hypertrophy, and reduced NADPH oxidase 4 expression and subsequent oxidative stress. Analysis of glomerular phenotypes using glomeruli isolation demonstrated that ipragliflozin preserved podocyte integrity and reduced oxidative stress. Regarding renal tissue hypoxia, a short-term ipragliflozin treatment improved oxygen tension in the kidney cortex, in which SGLT2 is predominantly expressed. We then administered ipragliflozin to type 1 diabetic mice and found that high- and low-dose ipragliflozin both reduced urinary albumin excretion. In conclusion, we confirmed dose-dependent differences in the effects of ipragliflozin on early diabetic nephropathy in vivo. Even low-dose ipragliflozin reduced renal cortical hypoxia and abnormal hemodynamics in early diabetic nephropathy. In addition to these effects, high-dose ipragliflozin exerted renoprotective effects by reducing oxidative stress in tubular epithelia and glomerular podocytes.

Concepts: Kidney, Glucose, Glomerulus, Nephron, Diabetic nephropathy, Blood sugar, Kidney transplantation, Podocyte

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Background Delayed graft function, which is reported in up to 50% of kidney-transplant recipients, is associated with increased costs and diminished long-term graft function. The effect that targeted mild hypothermia in organ donors before organ recovery has on the rate of delayed graft function is unclear. Methods We enrolled organ donors (after declaration of death according to neurologic criteria) from two large donation service areas and randomly assigned them to one of two targeted temperature ranges: 34 to 35°C (hypothermia) or 36.5 to 37.5°C (normothermia). Temperature protocols, which were initiated after authorization was obtained for the organ to be donated and for the donor’s participation in the study, ended when organ donors left the intensive care unit for organ recovery in the operating room. The primary outcome was delayed graft function in the kidney recipients, which was defined as the requirement for dialysis during the first week after transplantation. Secondary outcomes were the rates of individual organs transplanted in each treatment group and the total number of organs transplanted from each donor. Results The study was terminated early, on the recommendation of an independent data and safety monitoring board, after the interim analysis showed efficacy of hypothermia. At trial termination, 370 organ donors had been enrolled (180 in the hypothermia group and 190 in the normothermia group). A total of 572 patients received a kidney transplant (285 kidneys from donors in the hypothermia group and 287 kidneys from donors in the normothermia group). Delayed graft function developed in 79 recipients of kidneys from donors in the hypothermia group (28%) and in 112 recipients of kidneys from donors in the normothermia group (39%) (odds ratio, 0.62; 95% confidence interval, 0.43 to 0.92; P=0.02). Conclusions Mild hypothermia, as compared with normothermia, in organ donors after declaration of death according to neurologic criteria significantly reduced the rate of delayed graft function among recipients. (Funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01680744 .).

Concepts: Chronic kidney disease, Kidney, Nephrology, Organ, Hypothermia, Organ transplant, Kidney transplantation, Organ donation

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The waiting list for kidney transplantation is long and growing. The creation of “vouchers” for future kidney transplants enables living donation to occur when optimal for the donor and transplantation to occur later, when and if needed by the recipient.

Concepts: Time, Chronic kidney disease, Kidney, Nephrology, Diabetic nephropathy, Organ transplant, Kidney transplantation, Organ donation

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Background Although inhibitors of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system can slow the progression of diabetic kidney disease, the residual risk is high. Whether nuclear 1 factor (erythroid-derived 2)-related factor 2 activators further reduce this risk is unknown. Methods We randomly assigned 2185 patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus and stage 4 chronic kidney disease (estimated glomerular filtration rate [GFR], 15 to <30 ml per minute per 1.73 m(2) of body-surface area) to bardoxolone methyl, at a daily dose of 20 mg, or placebo. The primary composite outcome was end-stage renal disease (ESRD) or death from cardiovascular causes. Results The sponsor and the steering committee terminated the trial on the recommendation of the independent data and safety monitoring committee; the median follow-up was 9 months. A total of 69 of 1088 patients (6%) randomly assigned to bardoxolone methyl and 69 of 1097 (6%) randomly assigned to placebo had a primary composite outcome (hazard ratio in the bardoxolone methyl group vs. the placebo group, 0.98; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.70 to 1.37; P=0.92). In the bardoxolone methyl group, ESRD developed in 43 patients, and 27 patients died from cardiovascular causes; in the placebo group, ESRD developed in 51 patients, and 19 patients died from cardiovascular causes. A total of 96 patients in the bardoxolone methyl group were hospitalized for heart failure or died from heart failure, as compared with 55 in the placebo group (hazard ratio, 1.83; 95% CI, 1.32 to 2.55; P<0.001). Estimated GFR, blood pressure, and the urinary albumin-to-creatinine ratio increased significantly and body weight decreased significantly in the bardoxolone methyl group, as compared with the placebo group. Conclusions Among patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus and stage 4 chronic kidney disease, bardoxolone methyl did not reduce the risk of ESRD or death from cardiovascular causes. A higher rate of cardiovascular events with bardoxolone methyl than with placebo prompted termination of the trial. (Funded by Reata Pharmaceuticals; BEACON ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01351675 .).

Concepts: Renal failure, Chronic kidney disease, Kidney, Nephrology, Hypertension, Diabetes, Kidney transplantation, Kidney diseases

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Use of diabetic donor kidneys has been a necessary response to the donor organ shortage. Recipients of diabetic donor kidneys have higher mortality risk compared with recipients of nondiabetic donor kidneys. However, the survival benefit of transplantation with diabetic donor kidneys over remaining on the waitlist has not been previously evaluated.

Concepts: Kidney, Glucose, Urine, Organ, Organ transplant, Kidney transplantation, Organ donation

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Abstract Objective. BK virus (BKV)-induced viraemia after renal transplantation can be associated with severe impairment of graft function. This study evaluated possible risk factors for BKV replication and examined the outcomes following various currently used treatment approaches. Material and methods. Fifty-seven renal transplant recipients with BKV viraemia were retrospectively compared with 71 BKV-negative recipients to identify risk factors for BKV viraemia. Furthermore, outcome and graft function in 14 patients with BKV replication, in whom mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) was discontinued with a dose reduction of the remaining immunosuppressants, were compared with 32 patients in whom both MMF and the additional immunosuppressants were reduced. Results. Patients with BKV viraemia received MMF (p < 0.01) and triple immunosuppression (p < 0.01) significantly more often, and displayed tacrolimus (p = 0.034) at higher blood concentrations (p = 0.002), a lower lymphocyte count (p = 0.006) and a longer warm ischaemic time (p = 0.019), and were more often male (p = 0.026). Patients in whom MMF was stopped had a higher chance of clearance of BKV viraemia (p = 0.022), which was achieved more rapidly (p = 0.048). Graft function improved during treatment and no graft losses occurred, compared with eight graft losses in the MMF-treated group (p = 0.04). Conclusions. MMF and tacrolimus could promote BKV viraemia after renal transplantation. Discontinuation of MMF together with a reduction of calcineurin inhibitors and glucocorticoids could be an option to reduce BKV replication after renal transplantation.

Concepts: Kidney, Organ transplant, Kidney transplantation, Immunosuppressive drug, BK virus, JC virus, Mycophenolic acid, Polyomavirus

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Abstract Objective. Many patients experience problems with sexual functioning after renal transplantation (RTx). Research on the sexual functioning of the partners of those patients and the consequences for relationship satisfaction and quality of life is lacking. This study sought to explore changes in sexual and relationship functioning from before to after RTx in patients and their partners. Material and methods. Twenty-nine patients (mean ± SD age 53.4 ± 14.2 years) and 13 partners (age 57.1 ± 11.6 years) provided data 12-15 months after RTx. They retrospectively evaluated sexual and relationship functioning as well as general life satisfaction before RTx and, in comparison, in the most recent months. Results. Among the patients, most items on sexual experience indicated deterioration in sexual functioning. Among their partners, the wish for sexual activity with the patient and the actual frequency of sexual activity decreased from before to after RTx. The rate of partners indicating high personal importance for intercourse decreased from 83.3% to 69.2%, as did the rate of partners stating high sexual satisfaction (from 63.6% to 41.7%). Despite these trends, most patients and partners reported high relationship and life satisfaction after RTx. Conclusions. Partners of patients who had received a kidney transplant seem to be affected by negative changes in the patients' sexual functioning. Nonetheless, many couples maintain high relationship and life satisfaction.

Concepts: Chronic kidney disease, Kidney, Nephrology, Patient, Diabetic nephropathy, Organ transplant, Kidney transplantation, Human sexual behavior

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: The influence of the conversion from cyclosporine (CsA) to everolimus (EVR) on the chronopharmacokinetics of mycophenolic acid (MPA) and its glucuronide (MPAG) and acyl glucuronide (acyl-MPAG) metabolites in patients receiving enteric-coated mycophenolate sodium (EC-MPS) has not been studied.

Concepts: Organ transplant, Kidney transplantation, Transplant rejection, Immunosuppressants, Mycophenolic acid, Mycophenolate mofetil, Novartis