Long-term Follow-up of Kidney Transplant Recipients in the Spare-the-Nephron-Trial

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In the Spare-the-Nephron (STN) Study, kidney transplant recipients randomized about 115 days posttransplant to convert from CNI (calcineurin inhibitor)/MMF to sirolimus (SRL)/MMF had a significantly greater improvement in measured GFR (mGFR) at 12 months compared with those kept on CNI/MMF. The difference at 24 months was not statistically significant. From 14 top enrolling centers, 128 of 175 patients identified with a functioning graft at 2 years consented to enroll in an observational, noninterventional extension study to collect retrospectively and prospectively annual follow-up data for the interval since baseline (completion of the parent STN study at 24 months posttransplant). Overall, 11 patients died, including 5 (7.6%) in the SRL/MMF group and 6 (9.7%) in the CNI/MMF group. Twenty-two grafts have been lost including 10 (15.2%) in the SRL/MMF arm and 12 (19.4%) in the CNI/MMF arm. Death and chronic rejection were the most common causes of graft loss in both arms. There were modestly more cardiovascular events in the MMF/SRL group. Estimated creatinine clearance (Cockcroft-Gault) from baseline out to 6 additional years (8 years posttransplant, ITT analysis, SRL/MMF, n = 34; CNI/MMF, n = 26) was 63.2 ± 28.5 mL/min/1.73 m in the SRL/MMF group and 59.2 ± 27.2 mL/min/1.73 m in the CNI/MMF group and was not statistically significant, but there is a clinically meaningful trend for improved long-term renal function in the SRL/MMF group compared with the CNI/MMF group. The long-term decision for immunosuppression needs to be carefully individualized.

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Adult; Calcineurin Inhibitors; Cyclosporine; Drug Substitution; Drug Therapy, Combination; Female; Follow-Up Studies; Glomerular Filtration Rate; Graft Rejection; Graft Survival; Humans; Immunosuppressive Agents; Kidney Transplantation; Male; Middle Aged; Mycophenolic Acid; Nephrons; Prospective Studies; Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic; Retrospective Studies; Sirolimus; Tacrolimus; Time Factors; Treatment Outcome; United States

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