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Histol Histopathol. 2007 Nov;22(11):1269-79.

Soluble CD30 serum level--an adequate marker for allograft rejection of solid organs?

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  • 1Institute of Medical Immunology, Tissue Typing Laboratory, Martin-Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Halle/Saale, Germany. gerald.schlaf@medizin.uni-halle


The CD30 molecule, a 120 kDa cell surface glycoprotein, is a member of the tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNF-R) superfamily and was originally identified on the surface of Reed-Sternberg cells and anaplastic large cell lymphomas in Hodgkin's disease patients. In addition to lymphoproliferative disorders the expression of CD30 was found in both activated CD8+ and CD4+ Th2 cells which lead to the activation of B-cells and consequently to the inhibition of the Th1-type cellular immunity. The membrane-bound CD30 molecule can be proteolytically cleaved, thereby generating a soluble form (sCD30) of about 85 kDa. Low serum levels of soluble CD30 were found in healthy humans, whereas increased sCD30 serum concentrations were detected under pathophysiological situations such as systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, certain viral infections and adult T cell leukaemia/lymphoma. In addition, it has recently been suggested that pre- or post-transplant levels of sCD30 represent a biomarker for graft rejection associated with an impaired outcome for transplanted patients. We here review (i) the current knowledge of the clinical significance of sCD30 serum levels for solid organ transplantations and (ii) our own novel data regarding inter- and intra-individual variations as well as time-dependent alterations of sCD30 levels in patients. (iii) Based on this information the implementation of sCD30 as predictive pre-transplant or post-transplant parameter for solid organ transplantation is critically discussed.

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