Desensitization protocols improving access and outcome in transplantation

Andrea A. Zachary, Robert A. Mongomery, Mary S. Leffell

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Sensitization to antigens of the HLA and ABO system has been the biggest barrier to access in renal transplantation and, increasingly, in transplantation of other organs. Additionally, antibody to donor antigens has been shown to result in injury to the graft ranging from catastrophic, irreversible hyperacute rejection to the slower, more insidious, chronic form of rejection. The problem of access has been recognized globally and has been the incentive for measures to overcome the disadvantage experienced by the sensitized patient. However, early attempts to reduce sensitization achieved only transient success. Newer immunosuppressive agents that affect B-cell function or viability have permitted the development of treatment protocols to eliminate and, potentially, downregulate donor-specific antibodies. The use of these protocols has achieved successful transplants that were HLA and/or ABO incompatible prior to treatment and, as such, has provided some patients with their only opportunity for transplantation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)373-395
Number of pages23
JournalClinical and Applied Immunology Reviews
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2005


  • ABO incompatible transplantation
  • Desensitization
  • Double filtration plasmapheresis
  • HLA-specific antibody
  • Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg)
  • Plasmapheresis
  • Sensitization
  • Transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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