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Home    About AST    Education    Meetings & Events    Public Policy    Contact Us   June 20, 2014



AST call for applications for 2015 research grants
The AST is now accepting applications for 2015 research grants, including a new AST Transplant Nursing Grant. For 2015, the AST has identified research priorities in the areas of basic science, clinical science, and translational science. Click here to view the list of research priorities, or get started on your application. All applications are due by Monday, September 15, 2014.
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AST Board of Directors online elections now open
Eligible AST members are encouraged to cast their votes for the AST Board of Directors, as well as various bylaw revisions. The voting site will prompt you to log in to the AST website where you will find more detailed information. Usernames and passwords have been sent to eligible members. Your vote is requested by 5:00 PM Pacific time on July 29, 2014. Election results will be shared at the AST Town Hall meeting during the World Transplant Congress (WTC) on Tuesday, July 29, at 5:45 PM in the second Floor Foyer of the Moscone West Convention Center. Email Caitlin Frontino, AST director of membership, with questions.
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Only one week left! Abstract deadline is Sunday, June 29
ESOT + AST Joint Meeting
Personalized Transplantation: From New Diagnostics to New Therapeutics

October 17-19, 2014
Madrid, Spain

Come to Spain this fall as we explore:
  • New Options to Improve Immunosuppressive Therapy: Belatacept, Anti CD40 trial (ASKP1240), Anti- IL-6 and Tacrolimus formulations
  • Novel Diagnostics: Donor DNA - Biomarker of Graft Injury, In vivo Live Imaging of the Immune Response and Tolerance Profile
  • Novel Targets for Immunosuppression: B-cells, Plasma Cells and Complement
  • Personalized Medicine: Technique and Technology: Sequencing for TCR Repertoire, Pharmacogenetics, Epigenetics, and Mixed Chimerism
  • Cellular Strategies to Optimize Long Term Outcomes: T-regs, Mesenchymal Cells, Facilitator Cells
Be a part of the program!
Submit your clinical, translational and basic abstracts today on Novel Immune Monitoring and/or Diagnostics and Immunosuppression Strategies by Sunday, June 29.

Education on demand at
Find the educational content you need quickly and easily on the reorganized education page of the AST website. Find archives of past webinars and journal clubs, along with links to guidelines, directories, and other resources. Also, remember to register for AST's next journal club on June 24: "A committed precursor to innate lymphoid cells", Tues., June 24, register online.

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ASN plans early program on transplantation in cooperation with AST at Kidney Week 2014
In recent years, there have been important advances in the field of kidney transplantation that will impact the care of the kidney transplant recipient. This program provides an interactive, case-based overview of exciting advances in kidney transplantation, with a focus upon specific populations, complications, and ethical issues. Nephrologists with an interest in transplantation, transplant physicians, and trainees in the nephrology are encouraged to attend this program. Get full program details and register at
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Save the Date for the AST 2014 Fellows Symposium
September 19-21, 2014
Grapevine, Texas

Don't miss this highly popular educational meeting for young professionals starting a career in transplantation or immunology! The AST Fellows Symposium features an in-depth and interactive study of clinical transplantation, basic transplant immunobiology, and translational science in an informal setting, while providing important insights into career development and exceptional access to expert faculty. A limited number of travel grants are available for clinical and research fellows, and residents and trainees with an interest in solid organ transplantation.

Watch for registration opening shortly at

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Annual ITNS Symposium: The Premier Transplant Nursing Event
One World of Caring
September 27-29, 2014
JW Marriott, Houston, Texas

The Annual ITNS Symposium is the premier professional development event for transplant nurses and professionals. ITNS' focus on specialty transplant nursing education and research sets our symposium apart from other educational events. Come to Houston, Texas to hear from our nursing experts on nursing care of transplant patients, families, and communities during or after transplant. ITNS is committed to YOU, the transplant nurse. View the symposium brochure and full schedule agenda for more information!

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Frailty predicts waitlist mortality in liver transplant candidates
American Journal of Transplantation (login required)
Researchers aimed to determine whether frailty, a validated geriatric construct of increased vulnerability to physiologic stressors, predicts mortality in liver transplant candidates. Consecutive adult outpatients listed for liver transplant with laboratory Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD) at a single center (97 percent recruitment rate) underwent four frailty assessments: Fried Frailty, Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB), Activities of Daily Living (ADL) and Instrumental ADL (IADL) scales.
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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. The patients were otherwise treated according to the same protocols. The method of embolization was chosen on the basis of interventionalist practices at two sites within the program. Kaplan-Meier survival analyses at 1 and 3 years were the primary endpoints. There were no significant demographic differences between the groups.
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  UCLA Immunogenetics Center

The UCLA Immunogenetics Center (UIC) provides comprehensive testing for organ and tissue transplantation. Transplant testing has a long history at UCLA. HLA typing was pioneered here in the 1960's. The development of the microcytoxicity test in 1964 marked the beginning of international testing and standardization of HLA typing. The UCLA Immunogenetics Center has retained its leadership position in HLA research, and in the development of accompanying diagnostic testing. MORE

Islet size index as a predictor of outcomes in clinical islet autotransplantation
Transplantation (login required)
The islet size distribution in a preparation may contribute to islet transplant outcomes. At the same islet equivalent (IE) dose, larger islets may exhibit poorer therapeutic value and this may be because of oxygen diffusion limitations that worsen in proportion to islet size. To test this hypothesis, researchers studied the impact of islet size index (ISI) and other islet product characteristics on outcomes after islet autotransplant (IAT) in recipients receiving a marginal islet dose from Jan. 1, 2009 to June 11, 2012, at the University of Minnesota.
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Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis is the most rapidly growing indication for liver transplantation in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma in the US
Hepatology (login required)
Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is currently the third leading indication for liver transplantation (LT) in the U.S. and is predicted to become the leading indication for LT in the near future. The trends in NASH-related hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) among LT recipients in the U.S. remain undefined. Researchers performed a retrospective cohort study to evaluate trends in the etiology of HCC among adult LT recipients in the U.S. from 2002 to 2012, using national data from the United Network for Organ Sharing registry.
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Impact of anti-thymocyte globulin during immunosuppression induction
in patients with hepatitis C after liver transplantation

Digestive Diseases and Sciences (login required)
Induction immunosuppression with anti-thymocyte globulin (ATG) provides potential benefits after liver transplantation (LT). However, its use in patients with LT and hepatitis C (HCV) is controversial. The following evaluates the 1- and 2-year patient survival and HCV recurrence rate in patients receiving ATG during the induction phase of immunosuppression (IPI) after LT.
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Late antibody-mediated rejection in renal allografts: Outcome after conventional and novel therapies
Transplantation (login required)
Although several strategies for treating early antibody-mediated rejection (AMR) in kidney transplants have been investigated, evidence on treatment of late AMR manifesting after 6 months is sparse. In this single-center series, researchers present data on 23 consecutive patients treated for late AMR.
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Long-term outcomes of kidney transplantation across a positive complement-dependent cytotoxicity crossmatch
Transplantation (login required)
More than 30 percent of potential kidney transplant recipients have pre-existing anti–human leukocyte antigen antibodies. This subgroup has significantly lower transplant rates and increased mortality. Desensitization has become an important tool to overcome this immunological barrier. However, limited data is available regarding long-term outcomes, in particular for the highest risk group with a positive complement-dependent cytotoxicity crossmatch (CDC XM) before desensitization.
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The use of venous jump grafts in pancreatic transplantation - no difference in patient or allograft outcomes - an update of the UNOS Database
Clinical Transplantation (login required)
Venous jump grafts are used in pancreas transplantation to salvage a pancreas with a short portal vein or to facilitate an easier anastomosis. There have been no large studies evaluating the safety of venous jump grafts in pancreas transplantation. We analyzed the UNOS database to determine whether venous jump grafts are associated with graft loss or patient death. Data from UNOS on all adult pancreas transplant recipients 1996-2012 were analyzed.
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New blood test may help detect heart transplant rejection
HealthDay News via U.S. News & World Report
Researchers say they've developed a blood test that can detect heart transplant rejection weeks or months earlier than previously possible. The test looks for increasing amounts of the heart donor's DNA in the blood of the transplant recipient. Unlike a biopsy, this noninvasive test does not require removal of any heart tissue, according to Stanford University researchers.
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Safety and efficacy of outpatient bronchoscopy in lung transplant recipients:
A single center analysis of 3,197 procedures

Transplantation Research
Bronchoscopy represents an important diagnostic and therapeutic tool in the management of lung transplant recipients. Outpatient bronchoscopy reduces health costs and may improve quality of life amongst these patients. This retrospective study assessed the safety and efficacy of outpatient bronchoscopy including trans-bronchial biopsy.
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Pancreas transplantation alone safe, effective for long-term survival
Pancreas transplantation alone is safe and effective for long-term actual patient survival, insulin independence and improvement of metabolic parameters, according to data presented at the American Diabetes Association’s 74th Scientific Sessions. "As we know, since the first pancreas transplant alone was performed, improvements in surgical techniques, immunosuppressive therapy and medical knowledge have contributed to ameliorate the outcomes of the procedure in type 1 diabetes patients," said Margherita Occhipinti, MD, of the department of endocrinology and metabolism at the University of Pisa, Italy.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Quantifying the risk of incompatible kidney transplantation: A multicenter study
(American Journal of Transplantation)
Do You Believe in Miracles? (Transplants News)
Impact of repeat testing of living kidney donors within 14 days of the transplant procedure:
A multicenter retrospective survey
(Transplant Infectious Disease)
First-in-human study of the safety, efficacy of TOL101 induction to prevent kidney transplant rejection (American Journal of Transplantation)

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

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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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