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Home   About AST   Education   Meetings & Events   Public Policy   Contact Us   April 04, 2014


Renal transplantation using belatacept without maintenance steroids or calcineurin inhibitors
American Journal of Transplantation (login required)
Kidney transplantation remains limited by toxicities of calcineurin inhibitors (CNIs) and steroids. Belatacept is a less toxic CNI alternative, but existing regimens rely on steroids and have higher rejection rates. Experimentally, donor bone marrow and sirolimus promote belatacept's efficacy. To investigate a belatacept-based regimen without CNIs or steroids, authors transplanted recipients of live donor kidneys using alemtuzumab induction, monthly belatacept and daily sirolimus.
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AST announces 2015 Grants Program and RFA
AST's research program has supported transplantation by funding more than 200 research projects. Today, we're pleased to announce the new Request for Applications for 2015 research grants! Also new for 2015 is the AST Transplant Nursing Grant. Details on the RFA, grant criteria, application and eligibility requirements can be found here. Applications are due by Monday, Sept. 15.
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ESOT + AST: Partnering to bring you the best transplantation science
Personalized Transplantation: From New Diagnostics to New Therapeutics
Oct. 17-19
Madrid, Spain

Submit your clinical, translational and basic abstracts on Novel Immune Monitoring and/or Diagnostics and Immunosuppression Strategies. Submission Deadline: Sunday, June 29.

Long-term graft and patient survival are the key issues in transplantation. Outcomes are affected by individual immune risk and co-morbidities, as well as gender and race. The time is now to focus on improving outcomes through personalized medicine and finding the optimal combination of immunosuppressive drugs in the right dose for each patient.

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A discussion of risk in living kidney donors and other online education activities

The following webinars and journal club are scheduled for April, all are free to AST members and are available on demand after the live air date.
  • Journal Club on the role of Neuropilin-Semaphorin interactions in modulating Treg suppressor function: Wed., 4/9; register online
  • Fellows Webinar on Generic Immunosuppressants: Thurs., 4/10; register online
  • Discussion of Risk in Living Kidney Donors: Tues., 4/22; register online
AST also offers popular webinars on demand at and at, including understanding the new UNOS/OPTN kidney allocation policy!

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Ureteral complications after hand-assisted laparoscopic living donor nephrectomy
Transplantation (login required)
Urological complications, namely ureteral leak and obstruction, remain a major source of morbidity after renal transplantation. Given that the existing literature on ureteral complications pertains mostly to deceased as opposed to living donors, authors aimed to assess the risk factors for ureteral complications solely after living donor nephrectomy.
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Post-transplant hip fracture rate declining
Renal & Urology News
Hip fractures remain an important complication following kidney transplantation, but the incidence of these fractures has decreased substantially since 1997, according to a new study. The study, led by Dr. Wolfgang C. Winkelmayer, ScD, associate professor of medicine and director of clinical research in the Division of Nephrology at Stanford University of School of Medicine in Palo Alto, Calif., included 69,740 patients who under kidney transplantation from 1997 to 2010.
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Polyomavirus BK viremia in kidney transplant recipients after desensitization with IVIG and rituximab
Transplantation (login required)
Desensitization with intravenous immune globulin (IVIG) and rituximab improves transplantation rates. It is unclear if desensitization increases the risk of polyomavirus BK (BKV) viremia. Here, BKV viremia in HLA-sensitized patients after desensitization with IVIG and rituximab was analyzed.
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Ribavirin may treat hepatitis E infection in transplant recipients
Renal & Urology News
Ribavirin may be an effective form of monotherapy for solid-organ transplant patients with chronic hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection, French researchers reported in a study published online ahead of print in The New England Journal of Medicine. "To date, there is no established therapy for HEV infection," a research team led by Dr. Nassim Kamar, Ph.D., of Toulouse University, stated. "Here we report a combined case series from several transplantation centers in France, involving solid-organ transplant recipients infected with HEV who were treated with ribavirin alone."
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    The role of donor-specific HLA alloantibodies in liver transplantation (American Journal of Transplantation)
Medical outcomes of adolescent live kidney donors (Pediatric Transplantation)
Transplantation genetics: current status and prospects (American Journal of Transplantation)
Stephen Harms named UNOS Chief Operating Officer (United Network for Organ Sharing)
National assessment of early biliary complications following liver transplantation: Incidence and outcomes (Liver Transplantation)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.

2013 practice guideline by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and the American Society of Transplantation
Guidelines on Evaluation for Liver Transplantation were produced in 2005 by the American Association for the Study of liver Diseases. In the interim there have been major advances in the management of chronic liver disease, most notably in antiviral therapy for chronic viral hepatitis.
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Bland embolization versus chemoembolization of hepatocellular carcinoma before transplantation
Liver Transplantation (login required)
There is conflicting literature regarding the superiority of transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) versus bland transarterial embolization (TAE), and this has not been well studied before transplantation. Twenty-five TAE patients were matched in a 1:2 ratio with TACE patients by the initial radiographic tumor size and number in a retrospective, case-controlled study.
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