Early Versus Late Acute AMR in Kidney Transplant Recipients - A Comparison of Treatment Approaches and Outcomes from the ANZDATA Registry

Sanduni C. Fernando, Kevan R. Polkinghorne, Wai H. Lim, William R. Mulley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background. Antibody-mediated rejection (AMR) is a major cause of kidney allograft failure and demonstrates different properties depending on whether it occurs early (<6 mo) or late (>6 mo) posttransplantation. We aimed to compare graft survival and treatment approaches for early and late AMR in Australia and New Zealand. Methods. Transplant characteristics were obtained for patients with an AMR episode reported to the Australia and New Zealand Dialysis and Transplant Registry from January 2003 to December 2019. The primary outcome of time to graft loss from AMR diagnosis, with death considered a competing risk, was compared between early and late AMR using flexible parametric survival models. Secondary outcomes included treatments used, response to treatment, and time from AMR diagnosis to death. Results. After adjustment for other explanatory factors, late AMR was associated with twice the risk of graft loss relative to early AMR. The risk was nonproportional over time, with early AMR having an increased early risk. Late AMR was also associated with an increased risk of death. Early AMR was treated more aggressively than late with more frequent use of plasma exchange and monoclonal/polyclonal antibodies. There was substantial variation in treatments used by transplant centers. Early AMR was reported to be more responsive to treatment than late. Conclusions. Late AMR is associated with an increased risk of graft loss and death compared with early AMR. The marked heterogeneity in the treatment of AMR highlights the need for effective, new therapeutic options for these conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2424-2432
Number of pages9
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2023

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