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  • Kang ZY
  • Ma S
  • Liu W
  • Liu C
Transpl Immunol. 2023 Jun;78:101801 doi: 10.1016/j.trim.2023.101801.
POPULATION:

Kidney transplant recipients (11 studies, n= 19,543).

INTERVENTION:

Kidney transplantation with blood transfusion (n= 6,191).

COMPARISON:

Kidney transplantation without blood transfusion (n= 13,352).

OUTCOME:

The authors assessed the pooled associations between blood transfusion and occurrence of de novo donor-specific antibodies (dnDSA) and clinical outcomes. Blood transfusion was strongly correlated with the development of dnDSA (relative risk (RR) 1.40; 95% confidence interval (CI) [1.17, 1.67]). Patients with blood transfusion had a higher risk of developing anti-human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I dnDSA than non-transfused patients (RR 1.75; 95% CI [1.14, 2.69]) as well as significantly higher rates of antibody-mediated rejection (RR 1.41; 95% CI [1.21, 2.35]) and graft loss (RR 1.75; 95% CI [1.30, 2.35]). There were no statistically significant differences between the two groups in the development of anti-HLA antibodies, anti-HLA class II dnDSA, and anti-HLA class I and II dnDSA; delayed graft function; T cell-mediated rejection; acute rejection; borderline rejection; or patient death.

The relationship between blood transfusion following kidney transplantation (KT) and the development of de novo donor-specific antibodies (dnDSA) is controversial. This was investigated by conducting a meta-analysis of studies on patients who underwent KT with or without blood transfusion, and by evaluating the effect of post-KT blood transfusion on clinical outcomes of kidney transplant recipients. Relevant studies in the PubMed, EMBASE, and Cochrane Library databases were identified from inception to July 1, 2022. Two reviewers independently extracted data from the selected articles and estimated study quality. A fixed effects or random effects model was used to pool data according to the heterogeneity among studies. Data included in the meta-analysis were derived from 11 studies with a total of 19,543 patients including 6191 with and 13,352 without blood transfusion post-KT. We assessed the pooled associations between blood transfusion and occurrence of dnDSA and clinical outcomes of transplant recipients. Blood transfusion was strongly correlated with the development of dnDSA (relative risk [RR] = 1.40, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.17-1.67; P < 0.05). Patients with blood transfusion had a higher risk of developing anti-human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I dnDSA than non-transfused patients (RR = 1.75, 95% CI: 1.14-2.69; P < 0.05) as well as significantly higher rates of antibody-mediated rejection (AMR) (RR = 1.41, 95% CI: 1.21-2.35; P < 0.05) and graft loss (RR = 1.75, 95% CI: 1.30-2.35; P < 0.05). There were no statistically significant differences between the two groups in the development of anti-HLA antibodies, anti-HLA class II dnDSA, and anti-HLA class I and II dnDSA; delayed graft function; T cell-mediated rejection; acute rejection; borderline rejection; or patient death. Our results suggest that blood transfusion was associated with dnDSA development in KT recipients. The findings of this systematic review also suggest that post-KT blood transfusion recipients have a higher risk of AMR, and graft loss compared with non-transfused patients. Evidence from this meta-analysis indicates that the use of blood transfusion post-KT is associated with a significantly higher risk of immunological sensitization. More and higher quality results from large randomized controlled trials are still needed to inform clinical practice.