Drug fails to help kidney transplant recipients

A drug that protects the kidneys of patients with chronic kidney disease does not seem to provide the same benefit to kidney transplant recipients, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN).

Immunosuppressants help prolong the function of transplanted organs, but therapies that target non-immunological damage to these organs—such as elevated blood pressure and tissue scarring (or fibrosis)—have not been studied.

Angiotensin II blockade, which causes blood vessels to dilate, can slow the progression of kidney disease in individuals without kidney transplants. Hassan Ibrahim, MD (University of Minnesota) and his colleagues set out to test the strategy in transplant recipients. "To our knowledge this is the first randomized placebo-controlled trial of angiotensin II blockade in these patients," said Dr. Ibrahim.

The investigators assigned 153 recipients to receive the angiotensin II receptor blocker losartan or placebo within three months of transplantation, continuing treatment for five years.

"Contrary to what has been observed in native kidney disease, angiotensin II blockade did not demonstrate a statistically significant benefit in lessening fibrosis or terminal from severe fibrosis. Nevertheless, angiotensin II blockade was safe and well-tolerated," said Dr. Ibrahim. He noted that a similar trial is ongoing in Canada.

The findings provide valuable information for future studies of non-immunological therapies for .

More information: The article, entitled "Angiotensin II Blockade in Kidney Transplant Recipients," will appear online at http://jasn.asnjournals.org/ on January 10, 2013, doi: 10.1681/2012080777

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Time to stop giving toxic drugs to kidney transplant patients?

Sep 22, 2011

Patients who receive kidney transplants must take lifelong medications that, while preventing organ rejection, can also compromise other aspects of health. Immunosuppresive drugs called calcineurin inhibitors protect transplanted ...

Recommended for you

New analysis questions use of acute hemodialysis treatment

45 minutes ago

A common approach to treating kidney failure by removing waste products from the blood did not improve survival chances for people who suddenly developed the condition, in an analysis led by experts at the University of Pittsburgh ...

WHO: West Africa Ebola death toll rises to 1,350

56 minutes ago

Security forces acting on the president's orders used scrap wood and barbed wire to seal off 50,000 people inside their crowded slum Wednesday in an attempt to contain the Ebola outbreak, which has killed ...

User comments