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Surgery. 1990 Aug;108(2):415-21; discussion 421-2.

Pretransplant portal venous administration of donor antigen and portal venous allograft drainage synergistically prolong rat cardiac allograft survival.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Mo. 63110.


The effect of antigen given through the portal vein (PV) before transplantation or continuous drainage of a graft into the PV results in moderate prolongation of allograft survival. This study examines these treatment modalities further. Pretransplant donor antigen as 25 x 10(6) ultraviolet B-irradiated (12,000 joules/m2) donor spleen cells was given 7 days before heart transplantation through either the PV or systemic venous (IV) routes. On day 0, Lewis-to-Buffalo rat cardiac allografts were drained either into the PV or IV. Pretransplant PV donor antigen administration (p less than 0.005), but not by IV administration, significantly prolonged cardiac allograft survival across the strong RT 1 rat histoincompatibility barrier. Similarly PV, but not IV, drainage of the graft prolonged graft survival (p less than 0.005). Pretransplant IV antigen administration had no additive effect on PV drainage graft survival. In contrast, when pretransplant PV donor antigen was combined with PV drainage, 11 of 14 allografts (p less than 0.001) continued to function, free of rejection, after 150 days. Therefore for rat cardiac transplants a clearly synergistic graft-prolonging effect results when pretransplant PV donor antigen is combined with PV drainage of the allograts. These data clarify the potent tolerogenic effects of alloantigen not only administered into the PV but also continuously shed intraportally so that it is first processed by the liver.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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