Variable Benefits of Antibody Induction by Kidney Allograft Type

Aaron M. Williams, Meredith Barrett, Abigail R. Smith, Ranganath G. Kathawate, Kenneth J. Woodside, Randall S. Sung*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Kidneys from acute renal failure (ARF), expanded criteria donors (ECD), and donation after cardiac death (DCD) donors are often discarded due to concerns for delayed graft function (DGF) and graft failure. Induction immunosuppression may be used to minimize these risks, but practices vary widely. Furthermore, little is known regarding national outcomes of transplant recipients receiving induction immunosuppression for receipt of high-risk kidneys. Materials and methods: Using a center-level retrospective study, deceased donor transplants (115,485) from the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients from January 2003 to June 2016 were evaluated. Patients who received induction immunosuppression, including lymphocyte immune globulin, muromonab CD-3, IL-1 receptor antagonist, anti-thymocyte globulin, daclizumab, basiliximab, alemtuzumab, and rituximab, were included. Associations of center-level induction use with acute rejection in the first post-transplant year, graft failure, and patient mortality were evaluated using multivariable Cox and logistic regression. Results: Among all kidneys, increasing percentage of center-level induction was associated with lower risk of graft failure, acute rejection, and patient mortality. In recipients of ARF kidneys, the beneficial association of induction on graft failure and acute rejection was greater than in those that received non-ARF kidneys. Marginally greater benefit of induction was seen for acute rejection in ECD compared to standard criteria donor (SCD) recipients and for graft failure in DCD compared to donors after brain death (DBD). No benefit of induction was detected for patient and graft survival in ECD recipients, acute rejection in DCD recipients, and patient survival in DGF recipients. No difference in the benefit of induction was detected in any other comparisons. Conclusions: While seemingly beneficial for recipients of all kidneys, induction has more robust associations with lower graft failure and acute rejection probability for recipients of ARF kidneys. Given the lack of observed benefit for ECD recipients, induction policies should be carefully considered in these patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)69-81
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
StatePublished - Apr 2020


  • Allograft
  • Graft failure
  • Immunosuppression
  • Induction therapy
  • Kidney transplantation
  • Transplant rejection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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