Immune profile of pediatric renal transplant recipients following alemtuzumab induction.
ABSTRACT: The incidence of developing circulating anti-human leukocyte antigen antibodies and the kinetics of T cell depletion and recovery among pediatric renal transplant recipients who receive alemtuzumab induction therapy are unknown. In a collaborative endeavor to minimize maintenance immunosuppression in pediatric renal transplant recipients, we enrolled 35 participants from four centers and treated them with alemtuzumab induction therapy and a steroid-free, calcineurin-inhibitor-withdrawal maintenance regimen. At 3 months after transplant, there was greater depletion of CD4(+) than CD8(+) T cells within the total, naive, memory, and effector memory subsets, although depletion of the central memory subset was similar for CD4(+) and CD8(+) cells. Although CD8(+) T cells recovered faster than CD4(+) subsets overall, they failed to return to pretransplant levels by 24 months after transplant. There was no evidence for greater recovery of either CD4(+) or CD8(+) memory cells than naïve cells. Alemtuzumab relatively spared CD4(+)CD25(+)FoxP3(+) regulatory T cells, resulting in a rise in their numbers relative to total CD4(+) cells and a ratio that remained at least at pretransplant levels throughout the study period. Seven participants (20%) developed anti-human leukocyte antigen antibodies without adversely affecting allograft function or histology on 2-year biopsies. Long-term follow-up is underway to assess the potential benefits of this regimen in children.
Project description:The shortage of available organs remains the greatest barrier to expanding access to transplant. Despite advances in genetic editing and immunosuppression, survival in experimental models of kidney xenotransplant has generally been limited to <100 days. We found that pretransplant selection of recipients with low titers of anti-pig antibodies significantly improved survival in a pig-to-rhesus macaque kidney transplant model (6 days vs median survival time 235 days). Immunosuppression included transient pan-T cell depletion and an anti-CD154-based maintenance regimen. Selective depletion of CD4+ T cells but not CD8+ T cells resulted in long-term survival (median survival time >400 days vs 6 days). These studies suggested that CD4+ T cells may have a more prominent role in xenograft rejection compared with CD8+ T cells. Although animals that received selective depletion of CD8+ T cells showed signs of early cellular rejection (marked CD4+ infiltrates), animals receiving selective CD4+ depletion exhibited normal biopsy results until late, when signs of chronic antibody rejection were present. In vitro study results suggested that rhesus CD4+ T cells required the presence of SLA class II to mount an effective proliferative response. The combination of low pretransplant anti-pig antibody and CD4 depletion resulted in consistent, long-term xenograft survival.
Project description:Induction with lymphocyte-depleting antibodies is routinely used to prevent rejection but often skews T cells toward memory. It is not fully understood which memory and regulatory T-cell subsets are most affected and how they relate to clinical outcomes.We analyzed T cells from 57 living-donor renal transplant recipients (12 reactive and 45 quiescent) 2.8±1.4 years after alemtuzumab induction. Thirty-four healthy subjects and nine patients with acute cellular rejection (ACR) were also studied.We found that alemtuzumab caused protracted CD4 more than CD8 T-lymphocyte deficiency, increased proportion of CD4 memory T cells, and decreased proportion of CD4 regulatory T cells. Reactive patients exhibited higher proportions of CD4 effector memory T cells (TEM) and CD8 terminally differentiated TEM (TEMRA), with greater CD4 TEM and CD8 TEMRA to regulatory T cell ratios, than quiescent patients or healthy controls. Patients with ongoing ACR had profound reduction in circulating CD8 TEMRA. Mixed lymphocyte assays showed significantly lower T-cell proliferation to donor than third-party antigens in the quiescent group, while reactive and ACR patients exhibited increased effector molecules in CD8 T cells.Our findings provide evidence that T-cell skewing toward TEM may be associated with antigraft reactivity long after lymphodepletion. Further testing of TEM and TEMRA subsets as rejection predictors is warranted.
Project description:In organ transplantation, the composition of the B-cell compartment is increasingly identified as an important determinant for graft outcome. Whereas naïve and transitional B cells have been associated with long-term allograft survival and operational tolerance, memory B cells have been linked to decreased allograft survival. Alemtuzumab induction therapy effectively depletes B cells, but is followed by rapid repopulation up to levels exceeding base line. The characteristics of the repopulating B cells are currently unknown. We studied the phenotypic and functional characteristics of B cells longitudinally in 19 kidney transplant recipients, before and at 6, 9 and 12 months after alemtuzumab induction therapy. A transient increase in transitional B cells and cells with phenotypic characteristics of regulatory B cells, as well as a long-term dominance in naïve B cells was found in alemtuzumab-treated kidney transplant recipients, which was not influenced by conversion from tacrolimus to sirolimus. At all time-points after treatment, B cells showed unaltered proliferative and IgM-producing capacity as compared to pretransplant samples, whereas the ability to produce IgG was inhibited long-term. In conclusion, induction therapy with alemtuzumab results in a long-term shift toward naïve B cells with altered phenotypic and functional characteristics.
Project description:Alemtuzumab, an anti-CD52 monoclonal antibody, was administered to patients with RA between 1991 and 1994. We have followed a cohort of recipients since that time and previously reported significant delays in immune reconstitution. Here we report >20 years of follow-up data from this unique cohort.Surviving alemtuzumab recipients were age, sex and disease duration matched with RA controls. Updated mortality and morbidity data were collected for alemtuzumab recipients. For both groups antigenic responses were assessed following influenza, Pneumovax II and combined diphtheria/tetanus/poliovirus vaccines. Circulating cytokines and lymphocyte subsets were also quantified.Of 16 surviving alemtuzumab recipients, 13 were recruited: 9 recipients underwent a full clinical assessment and 4 had case notes review only. Since our last review 10 patients had died from causes of death consistent with long-standing RA, and no suggestion of compromised immune function. Compared with controls the alemtuzumab cohort had significantly reduced CD4+ and CD8+ central memory T-cells, CD5+ B cells, naïve B cells and CD19+CD24hiCD38hi transitional (putative regulatory) B cells. Nonetheless vaccine responses were comparable between groups. There were significantly higher serum IL-15 and IFN-? levels in the alemtuzumab cohort. IL-15 levels were inversely associated with CD4+ total memory and central memory T cells.After 20 years the immune system of alemtuzumab recipients continues to show differences from disease controls. Nonetheless mortality and morbidity data, alongside vaccination responses, do not suggest clinical immune compromise. As lymphodepleting therapies, including alemtuzumab, continue to be administered this work is important with regard to long-term immune monitoring and stages of immune recovery.
Project description:Introduction:HIV-positive (HIV+) kidney transplant recipients exhibit a 2- to 3-fold increased risk of allograft rejection. Dysregulated immune activation in HIV infection persists despite successful antiretroviral therapy and is associated with non-AIDS morbidity, including renal disease. We hypothesized that the pathological levels of inflammation and immune activation associated with chronic HIV infection could have clinical utility in the prediction of rejection in HIV+ kidney recipients. Methods:Prospective cohort study of 22 HIV-negative (HIV-; donor) to HIV+ (recipient) kidney transplant recipients who underwent biomarker assessment pretransplant and were subsequently followed for development of acute rejection. Plasma levels of markers of inflammation (soluble tumor necrosis factor receptor 1 [sTNF-R1] and C-reactive protein [CRP]) and microbial translocation (soluble CD14 and lipopolysaccharide) were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay or chromogenic endpoint assay. Levels of activated (CD38+HLADR+) CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, and T regulatory cells (CD4+CD25highFoxP3+) were measured by flow cytometry. Results:Among the biomarkers evaluated, only the pretransplant levels of sTNF-R1, CRP, and frequencies of CD38+HLADR+ CD8 T cells, were found to be at significantly higher levels among patients who experienced biopsy-proven acute rejection. Confirming our hypothesis, patients with high pretransplant levels of sTNF-R1 or activated CD8+ T cells had a significantly increased 200-day cumulative incidence of biopsy-proven acute rejection (0 vs. 38% for both; P = 0.01). Similarly, pretransplant CRP levels higher than 5 ?g/ml were associated with increased risk of acute rejection within the first 6 months post-transplant (0 vs. 43%; P = 0.01). Conclusion:Biomarker-based identification of HIV+ recipients at increased risk for rejection might facilitate individualized induction immunosuppression regimens in this vulnerable patient population.
Project description:Transfusion-related alloimmunization is a potent barrier to the engraftment of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cells in patients with nonmalignant diseases (NMDs). Memory T cells, which drive alloimmunization, are relatively resistant to commonly used conditioning agents. Alefacept, a recombinant leukocyte function antigen-3/IgG1 fusion protein, targets CD2 and selectively depletes memory versus naive T cells. Three multiply transfused pediatric patients with NMD received a short course of high-dose i.v. alefacept (.25 mg/kg/dose on days -40 and -9 and .5 mg/kg/dose on days -33, -26, -19, and -12) before undergoing unrelated allogeneic transplant in the setting of reduced-intensity pretransplant conditioning and calcineurin inhibitor-based post-transplant graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) prophylaxis. Alefacept infusions were well tolerated in all patients. Peripheral blood flow cytometry was performed at baseline and during and after alefacept treatment. As expected, after the 5 weekly alefacept doses, each patient demonstrated selective loss of CD2(hi)/CCR7(-)/CD45RA(-) effector memory (Tem) and CD2(hi)/CCR7(+)/CD45RA(-) central memory (Tcm) CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells with relative preservation of the CD2(lo) Tem and Tcm subpopulations. In addition, depletion of CD2(+) natural killer (NK) cells also occurred. Neutrophil recovery was rapid, and all 3 patients had 100% sorted (CD3/CD33) peripheral blood donor chimerism by day +100. Immune reconstitution (by absolute neutrophil, monocyte, and lymphocyte counts) was comparable with a cohort of historical control patients. All 3 patients developed GVHD but are all now off immune suppression and >2 years post-transplant with stable full-donor engraftment. These results suggest that alefacept at higher dosing can deplete both memory T cells and NK cells and that incorporating CD2-targeted depletion into a reduced-intensity transplant regimen is feasible and safe in heavily transfused patients.
Project description:Donor-reactive memory T cells undermine organ transplant survival and are poorly controlled by immunosuppression or costimulatory blockade. Memory CD4 T cells provide CD40-independent help for the generation of donor-reactive effector CD8 T cells and alloantibodies (alloAbs) that rapidly mediate allograft rejection. The goal of this study was to investigate the role of B cell activating factor (BAFF) and a proliferation-inducing ligand (APRIL) in alloresponses driven by memory CD4 T cells. The short-term neutralization of BAFF alone or BAFF plus APRIL synergized with anti-CD154 mAb to prolong heart allograft survival in recipients containing donor-reactive memory CD4 T cells. The prolongation was associated with reduction in antidonor alloAb responses and with inhibited reactivation and helper functions of memory CD4 T cells. Additional depletion of CD8 T cells did not enhance the prolonged allograft survival suggesting that donor-reactive alloAbs mediate late graft rejection in these recipients. This is the first report that targeting the BAFF cytokine network inhibits both humoral and cellular immune responses induced by memory CD4 T cells. Our results suggest that reagents neutralizing BAFF and APRIL may be used to enhance the efficacy of CD40/CD154 costimulatory blockade and improve allograft survival in T cell-sensitized recipients.
Project description:Prevention of rejection after renal transplantation requires treatment with immunosuppressive drugs. Data on their in vivo effects on T- and B-cell phenotype and function are limited.In a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled study to prevent renal allograft rejection, patients were treated with tacrolimus, mycophenolate mofetil (MMF), steroids, and a single dose of rituximab or placebo during transplant surgery. In a subset of patients, we analyzed the number and phenotype of peripheral T and B cells by multiparameter flow cytometry before transplantation, and at 3, 6, 12, and 24 months after transplantation.In patients treated with tacrolimus/MMF/steroids the proportion of central memory CD4+ and CD8+ T cells was higher at 3 months post-transplant compared to pre-transplant levels. In addition, the ratio between the percentage of central memory CD4+ and CD4+ regulatory T cells was significantly higher up to 24 months post-transplant compared to pre-transplant levels. Interestingly, treatment with tacrolimus/MMF/steroids resulted in a shift toward a more memory-like B-cell phenotype post-transplant. Addition of a single dose of rituximab resulted in a long-lasting B-cell depletion. At 12 months post-transplant, the small fraction of repopulated B cells consisted of a high percentage of transitional B cells. Rituximab treatment had no effect on the T-cell phenotype and function post-transplant.Renal transplant recipients treated with tacrolimus/MMF/steroids show an altered memory T and B-cell compartment post-transplant. Additional B-cell depletion by rituximab leads to a relative increase of transitional and memory-like B cells, without affecting T-cell phenotype and function.ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00565331.
Project description:We evaluated an ex vivo photodepletion (PD) technique to selectively deplete graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) alloreacting T cells given to 24 human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-identical sibling stem cell transplantation (SCT) recipients. Donor lymphocytes were activated by 72-hour exposure to irradiated in vitro expanded recipient T lymphocytes and pulsed with a TH9402 photosensitizer. Alloactivated T cells preferentially retaining the photosensitizer were eliminated by light exposure. The PD product showed an inverted CD4(+)/CD8(+) ratio with greatest depletion occurring in the CD4(+) naive and central memory populations. In contrast, the CD8(+) naive and effector cells were relatively conserved, reflecting the differential extrusion of TH9402 by T cell subsets. Cytomegalovirus reactive T cells were reduced in the PD product and in recipient blood 100 days after SCT when compared with contemporaneous HLA-identical sibling donor T cell-depleted SCT recipients. Although PD SCT recipients experienced similar absolute lymphocyte counts during the first 100 days after SCT, they achieved 100% donor T cell chimerism more rapidly and had higher CD8(+) naive T cell counts early after SCT. SCT recipients of PD products with the lowest CD4 central memory content had the highest risk of developing chronic GVHD (cGVHD) (P = .04) and a poorer survival (P = .03). Although the persistence of CD8(+) naive T cells may have contributed to important antileukemia responses resulting in a relatively low relapse rate, our findings emphasize the role of donor memory T cells and CD4 cells in establishing immune competence post-SCT. Although PD is associated with excellent outcomes in the haploidentical setting, the low frequency of alloactivations in HLA-matched pairs makes the PD approach used by our group for allodepletion in HLA-matched sibling transplantations an inefficient technique.
Project description:Antibody-mediated rejection is currently the leading cause of transplant failure. Prevailing dogma predicts that B cells differentiate into anti-donor-specific antibody (DSA)-producing plasma cells only with the help of CD4+ T cells. Yet, previous studies have shown that dependence on helper T cells decreases when high amounts of protein antigen are recruited to the spleen, two conditions potentially met by organ transplantation. This could explain why a significant proportion of transplant recipients develop DSA despite therapeutic immunosuppression. Using murine models, we confirmed that heart transplantation, but not skin grafting, is associated with accumulation of a high quantity of alloantigens in recipients' spleen. Nevertheless, neither naive nor memory DSA responses could be observed after transplantation of an allogeneic heart into recipients genetically deficient for CD4+ T cells. These findings suggest that DSA generation rather result from insufficient blockade of the helper function of CD4+ T cells by therapeutic immunosuppression. To test this second theory, different subsets of circulating T cells: CD8+, CD4+, and T follicular helper [CD4+CXCDR5+, T follicular helper cells (Tfh)], were analyzed in 9 healthy controls and 22 renal recipients. In line with our hypothesis, we observed that triple maintenance immunosuppression (CNI?+?MMF?+?steroids) efficiently blocked activation-induced upregulation of CD25 on CD8+, but not on CD4+ T cells. Although the level of expression of CD40L and ICOS was lower on activated Tfh of immunosuppressed patients, the percentage of CD40L-expressing Tfh was the same than control patients, as was Tfh production of IL21. Induction therapy with antithymocyte globulin (ATG) resulted in prolonged depletion of Tfh and reduction of CD4+ T cells number with depleting monoclonal antibody in murine model resulted in exponential decrease in DSA titers. Furthermore, induction with ATG also had long-term beneficial influence on Tfh function after immune reconstitution. We conclude that CD4+ T cell help is mandatory for naive and memory DSA responses, making Tfh cells attractive targets for improving the prevention of DSA generation and to prolong allograft survival. Waiting for innovative treatments to be translated into the clinical field ATG induction seems to currently offer the best clinical prospect to achieve this goal.