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1.
J Clin Med ; 11(9)2022 May 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1820307

ABSTRACT

Mortality from COVID-19 among kidney transplant recipients (KTR) is high, and their response to three vaccinations against SARS-CoV-2 is strongly impaired. We retrospectively analyzed the serological response of up to five doses of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in KTR from 27 December 2020 until 31 December 2021. Particularly, the influence of the different dose adjustment regimens for mycophenolic acid (MPA) on serological response to fourth vaccination was analyzed. In total, 4277 vaccinations against SARS-CoV-2 in 1478 patients were analyzed. Serological response was 19.5% after 1203 basic immunizations, and increased to 29.4%, 55.6%, and 57.5% in response to 603 third, 250 fourth, and 40 fifth vaccinations, resulting in a cumulative response rate of 88.7%. In patients with calcineurin inhibitor and MPA maintenance immunosuppression, pausing MPA and adding 5 mg prednisolone equivalent before the fourth vaccination increased the serological response rate to 75% in comparison to the no dose adjustment (52%) or dose reduction (46%). Belatacept-treated patients had a response rate of 8.7% (4/46) after three vaccinations and 12.5% (3/25) after four vaccinations. Except for belatacept-treated patients, repeated SARS-CoV-2 vaccination of up to five times effectively induces serological response in kidney transplant recipients. It can be enhanced by pausing MPA at the time of vaccination.

2.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-331656

ABSTRACT

Background: Mortality from COVID-19 among kidney transplant recipients (KTR) is high, and their response to three vaccinations against SARS-CoV-2 is strongly impaired. Methods We retrospectively analyzed serological response of up to five doses of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in KTR from December 27, 2020, until December 31, 2021. Particularly, the influence of different dose adjustment regimens for mycophenolic acid (MPA) on serological response to fourth vaccination was analyzed. Results In total, 4.277 vaccinations against SARS-CoV-2 in 1.478 patients were analyzed. Serological response was 19.5% after 1.203 basic immunizations, and increased to 29.4%, 55.6%, and 57.5% in response to 603 third, 250 fourth and 40 fifth vaccinations, resulting in a cumulative response rate of 88.7%. In patients with calcineurin inhibitor and MPA maintenance immunosuppression, pausing MPA and adding 5 mg prednisolone equivalent before the fourth vaccination increased serological response rate to 75% in comparison to no dose adjustment (52%) or dose reduction (46%). Belatacept-treated patients had a response rate of 8.7% (4/46) after three vaccinations and 12.5% (3/25) after four vaccinations. Conclusion Except for belatacept-treated patients, repeated SARS-CoV-2 vaccination of up to five times effectively induces serological response in kidney transplant recipients. It can be enhanced by pausing MPA at the time of vaccination.

3.
JCI Insight ; 7(9)2022 05 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1765224

ABSTRACT

Transplant recipients exhibit an impaired protective immunity after SARS-CoV-2 vaccination, potentially caused by mycophenolate (MPA) immunosuppression. Recent data from patients with autoimmune disorders suggest that temporary MPA hold might greatly improve booster vaccination outcomes. We applied a fourth dose of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine to 29 kidney transplant recipients during a temporary (5 weeks) MPA/azathioprine hold, who had not mounted a humoral immune response to previous vaccinations. Seroconversion until day 32 after vaccination was observed in 76% of patients, associated with acquisition of virus-neutralizing capacity. Interestingly, 21/25 (84%) calcineurin inhibitor-treated patients responded, but only 1/4 belatacept-treated patients responded. In line with humoral responses, counts and relative frequencies of spike receptor binding domain-specific (RBD-specific) B cells were markedly increased on day 7 after vaccination, with an increase in RBD-specific CD27++CD38+ plasmablasts. Whereas overall proportions of spike-reactive CD4+ T cells remained unaltered after the fourth dose, frequencies were positively correlated with specific IgG levels. Importantly, antigen-specific proliferating Ki67+ and in vivo-activated programmed cell death 1-positive T cells significantly increased after revaccination during MPA hold, whereas cytokine production and memory differentiation remained unaffected. In summary, antimetabolite hold augmented all arms of immunity during booster vaccination. These data suggest further studies of antimetabolite hold in kidney transplant recipients.


Subject(s)
Antimetabolites , COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Kidney Transplantation , Antibodies, Viral , Antimetabolites/therapeutic use , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Humans , Immunity, Cellular , Immunity, Humoral , Immunosuppressive Agents/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2 , Transplant Recipients , Vaccination
4.
J Clin Med ; 11(6)2022 Mar 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1760679

ABSTRACT

Immunosuppression increases the risk of severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Morbidity and mortality of this disease in kidney transplant patients are higher than in the general population. As the vaccination response of transplant patients is weak, serological monitoring was performed. In this cohort study, we analyzed the determinants of vaccination response. All patients had no history of COVID-19. With anti-spike IgG monitoring, 148 responders and 415 non-responders were identified. We compared both groups using multivariate analyses of the cohort and a sub-cohort of mycophenolic-acid-treated patients. We investigated the influence of patient characteristics, immunosuppression, and erythrocyte inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH) activity. In responders, the time after transplantation was longer (13.5 vs. 8.5 years), the glomerular filtration rate was higher (56.9 vs. 47.8 mL/min/1.73 m2), and responders were younger (53.0 vs. 57.4 years). Heterologous vaccination was more effective than homologous vaccination. Calcineurin inhibitors plus mycophenolate reduced the seroconversion rate. No seroconversion was observed in belatacept patients. In mycophenolate-treated patients, IMPDH activity was a significantly better predictor of response than mycophenolate dose (AUC 0.84 vs. 0.62, p < 0.001). Immunosuppression strongly affects vaccine response. Modifications to immunosuppression should be considered in order to facilitate this response. Erythrocyte IMPDH activity can be used to guide mycophenolate treatment.

5.
J Clin Med ; 9(11)2020 Oct 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-895373

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 denotes a global health issue. Data regarding COVID-19 incidence in kidney transplant recipients (KTR) are sparse. From 19 March to 19 May 2020, we performed a systematic screening for COVID-19 in KTR. Tests included serum analysis for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies using S protein-based immunofluorescence, anti-SARS-CoV-2 S1 immunoglobulin G (IgG) and immunoglobulin A (IgA) enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA), and/or quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) from nasal-throat swabs. Outpatient serum samples from KTR with PCR confirmed COVID-19, and swab samples from recipients (+donors) undergoing kidney transplantation were analyzed. Out of 223 samples from outpatients, 13 patients were positive with solely anti-SARS-CoV-2-IgA and 3 with both anti-IgA and anti-IgG. In total, 53 patients were symptomatic in the past, but positive results could be found in both symptomatic and asymptomatic patients. After an in depth analysis using immunofluorescence and neutralization tests in 2 KTR, recent COVID-19 infection remained highly suspicious. Apart from outpatient visits, only 5 out of 2044 KTR were symptomatic and tested positive via PCR, of which 4 recovered and one died. All patients showed seroconversion during the course of the disease. This study demonstrated a low seroprevalence in a German KTR cohort, and seroconversion of IgA and IgG after COVID-19 could be demonstrated. Effective containment strategies enabled us to continue our transplant program.

6.
J Clin Med ; 9(6)2020 Jun 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-603147

ABSTRACT

Health care systems worldwide have been facing major challenges since the outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Kidney transplantation (KT) has been tremendously affected due to limited personal protective equipment (PPE) and intensive care unit (ICU) capacities. To provide valid information on risk factors for ICU admission in a high-risk cohort of old kidney recipients from old donors in the Eurotransplant Senior Program (ESP), we retrospectively conducted a bi-centric analysis. Overall, 17 (16.2%) patients out of 105 KTs were admitted to the ICU. They had a lower BMI, and both coronary artery disease (CAD) and hypertensive nephropathy were more frequent. A risk model combining BMI, CAD and hypertensive nephropathy gained a sensitivity of 94.1% and a negative predictive value of 97.8%, rendering it a valuable search test, but with low specificity (51.1%). ICU admission also proved to be an excellent parameter identifying patients at risk for short patient and graft survivals. Patients admitted to the ICU had shorter patient (1-year 57% vs. 90%) and graft (5-year 49% vs. 77%) survival. To conclude, potential kidney recipients with a low BMI, CAD and hypertensive nephropathy should only be transplanted in the ESP in times of SARS-CoV-2 pandemic if the local health situation can provide sufficient ICU capacities.

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