Author(s): Maryniak RK, First MR, Weiss MA
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Abstract The study was undertaken to redefine morphological appearance and clinical implications of the diagnosis of transplant glomerulopathy (TGP). Fifty-seven renal transplant biopsy specimens from thirty patients with the diagnosis of TGP were evaluated. Multiple repeat biopsies in several cases enabled us to follow the pattern of the evolution of the changes. Transplant dysfunction manifested itself 8 days to 13 years post-transplantation by proteinuria and/or elevated creatinine level. The earliest recognizable morphological change was the swelling of endothelial and mesangial cells. This stage was called evolving TGP. The intermediate stage was characterized by enlarged glomeruli with lobular simplification, spongy matrix, and glomerular basement membrane (GBM) deformities. The advanced stage of TGP showed pronounced GBM changes (reduplication, interposition). These light microscopic changes were associated with vascular rejection. Immunofluorescence showed significant glomerular deposition of IgM (83\% of biopsies) and fibrinogen (66\%). Electron microscopy at an early stage showed subendothelial widening with cellular debris and focal endothelial damage with fibrin deposition. In the advanced stage, complex GBM changes developed as a reparative response to the capillary wall injury. Effacement of foot processes was a constant finding at all stages. In follow-up, twenty-three allografts failed (77\%), five patients are stable, and two died due to other causes. TGP has specific morphology with an attendant poor long-term prognosis for the allograft.
This article was published in Kidney Int
and referenced in Journal of Transplantation Technologies & Research