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Am J Nephrol. 1998;18(5):373-8.

Clinical course of cytomegalovirus (CMV) viremia with and without ganciclovir treatment in CMV-seropositive kidney transplant recipients. Longitudinal follow-up of CMV pp65 antigenemia assay.

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  • 1Division of Nephrology, Department of Internal Medicine, Kangnam St. Mary's Hospital, Catholic University Medical College, Seoul, South Korea.


This study was designed to evaluate the longitudinal history of cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and to test the capacity of ganciclovir as effective therapy in CMV-seropositive renal transplant recipients. The CMV viremia was detected with CMV pp65 antigenemia assay in 153 renal transplants. The recipients were classified as having low-grade and high-grade CMV infections according to the severity of CMV infection. The recipients with low-grade CMV infections were observed without ganciclovir treatment, and the recipients with high-grade CMV infection were randomly assigned to ganciclovir-treated and untreated groups. The clinical course between low-grade and high-grade CMV infections was evaluated. All recipients with low-grade CMV infection (n = 62) showed spontaneous remission regardless of immunosuppresants. In high-grade CMV infection (n = 31), the ciclosporin A treated group (n = 11) showed no evidence of CMV disease, and the methylprednisolone-treated group (n = 8) showed CMV disease in 1 (25%) of 4 ganciclovir-untreated recipients. In the OKT3 group (n = 12), symptomatic CMV infection was observed in 6 (100%) ganciclovir-untreated recipients contrary to no CMV disease in the ganciclovir-treated group (p < 0.05). In conclusion, the CMV antigenemia assay is effective in monitoring CMV viremia, and ganciclovir treatment should be done during early CMV viremia in OKT3-treated recipients.

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