Aims: ABO-incompatible (ABOi) kidney transplantation (KT) is being increasingly performed to overcome donor shortages. However, debate persists regarding the post-transplant outcomes of ABOi KT vs. that of ABO-compatible (ABOc) KT. Methods: A total 454 recipients who underwent living-donor KT (LDKT) between June 2010 and July 2014 at Severance Hospital (Seoul) were retrospectively reviewed. 100 ABOi and 354 ABOc KTs were compared. Recipients with a pretransplant positive crossmatch to their donors, pretransplant donor-specific anti-HLA antibody (DSA), or high panel reactive antibody (PRA ≥ 50%) were excluded from both the ABOi and ABOc KT groups. Finally, the authors compared the transplant outcomes of 95 of these ABOi KTs and 121 ABOc KTs performed over the same period. Results: No significant difference in incidence of biopsy-proven acute rejection was observed between the ABOi and ABOc KT groups (p = 0.230), and group glomerular filtration rate of ABOi KT was comparable to that of ABOc KT (p > 0.05 at all time points). 3-year deathcensored graft survival rates were similar (96.8 vs. 96.6%, respectively; p = 0.801). However, the incidences of postoperative bleeding, cytomegalovirus infection, fungal infection, and serious infection rates were significantly higher after ABOi KT. Conclusions: In this study, graft renal function and survival after ABOi KT were excellent, and the incidence of acute rejection was similar to that of ABOc KT. However, efforts are needed to reduce hemorrhagic and infectious complications after ABOi KT. ABOi KT can be a good strategy to overcome ABO antibody barriers and relieve donor shortage.
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