Rationale: Human leukocyte antigen (HLA) is the major immunologic barrier in kidney transplantation (KT). Various desensitization protocols to overcome the HLA barrier have increased the opportunity for transplantation in sensitized patients. In addition, technological advances in solid-phase assays have permitted more comprehensive assessment of donor-specific antibodies. Although various desensitization therapies and immunologic techniques have been developed, the final transplantation decision is still based on the classic complement-dependent cytotoxicity (CDC) crossmatch (XM) technique. Some patients who fail to achieve negative XM have lost their transplant opportunities, even after receiving sufficient desensitization therapies. Patient concerns: A 57-year-old male with end-stage renal disease secondary to chronic glomerulonephritis was scheduled to have a second transplant from his son, but CDC XM was positive. Diagnoses: Initial CDC XM (Initial T-AHG 1:32) and flow-cytometry XM were positive. Anti-HLA-B59 donor specific antibody was detected by Luminex single antigen assay. Interventions: Herein, we report a successful case of KT across a positive CDC XM (T-AHG 1:8 at the time of transplantation) by using C1q assay-directed, bortezomib-assisted desensitization. After confirming a negative conversion in the C1q donor-specific antibody, we decided to perform KT accepting a positive AHG-CDC XM of 1:8 at the time of transplantation. Outcomes: The posttransplant course was uneventful and a protocol biopsy at 3 months showed no evidence of rejection. The patient had excellent graft function at 12 months posttransplant. Lessons: The results of XM test and solid-phase assay should be interpreted in the context of the individual patient.
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