Acute humoral rejection (AHR), which occurs in up to 8% of kidney transplant recipients, is a significant cause of renal allograft dysfunction and loss. More efficacious treatment modalities are needed to eliminate or curtail alloantibody production and its deleterious effects on the kidney. The availability of animal models mimicking human AHR is essential to understand its pathophysiology and develop new treatment strategies. Using a mouse kidney transplant model, we demonstrate that presensitization of recipients with donor skin grafts results in rejection of subsequent renal allografts. All presensitized mice developed renal failure 8.6 ± 4.3 days after engraftment, with serum creatinine values near 100 μmol/dl. Graft histology revealed mild, diffuse, interstitial, mononuclear cell infiltrates; prominent peritubular capillary inflammatory cell margination; patchy interstitial hemorrhage; interstitial edema; and focal glomerular fibrin deposition. Complement (C3d) deposition was diffuse and prominent in peritubular capillaries. Serum analysis demonstrated high levels of circulating alloantibodies with broad cross-reactivity to many MHC haplotypes. The clinical setting and histological findings of our model strongly resemble AHR, which is frequently associated with cellular rejection, a situation commonly encountered in human renal allograft recipients. This animal model provides a valuable tool to study the pathogenesis of AHR, its relationship to cellular alloimmunity, its contribution to graft injury, and the effects of various potential therapeutic interventions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine