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Pathol Int. 2012 Apr;62(4):254-63. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1827.2012.02803.x. Epub 2012 Mar 4.

Tubular and endothelial chimerism in renal allografts using fluorescence and chromogenic in situ hybridization (FISH, CISH) technology.

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1
Institute of Surgical Pathology, Department Pathology, University Hospital Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland. zsuzsanna.varga@usz.ch

Abstract

The role of endothelial and tubular chimerism in renal allograft adaptation and rejection varies in different studies. We addressed the correlation between different clinico-pathological settings and sex-chromosomal endothelial and/or tubular chimerism in renal allografts. We examined the presence or absence of the X and Y chromosomes by fluorescence and chromogenic in situ hybridization (FISH, CISH) methodology on paraffin embedded kidney biopsies in 16 gender mismatched renal transplants (1 to 12 years post-transplantation). Twelve patients were male, four female. Four groups were selected: (i) Vascular calcineurin inhibitor toxicity without rejection; (ii) T-cell mediated vascular rejection; (iii) antibody mediated rejection; and (iv) C4d-positivity in AB0-incompatible transplants with or without rejection. Twelve non-transplant kidney biopsies (8 female, 4 male) were used as controls. Tubular chimerism was detected more frequently (69%) than endothelial chimerism (12%) in renal transplants. One of 12 control patients had tubular and endothelial chimeric cells (8%). The Y chromosome occurred in 8/12 male recipients (67%) in tubular epithelial cells and in 5/12 male recipients (42%) in endothelial cells. Double X chromosomes were detected in 3/4 female recipients in tubular epithelium. Tubular chimerism occurred more often with endothelial chimerism and capillaritis without correlation with other parameters, such as rejection. Combined Y chromosomal tubular and lymphatic endothelial chimerism correlated with T-cell mediated vascular rejection in two out of three patients (66%). Combined Y chromosomal tubular and peritubular capillary chimerism correlated with antibody mediated C4d+ rejection in one out of two patients (50%). Tubular and/or endothelial chimerism occur frequently in gender mismatched renal allografts and, when combined, this is associated with T-cell mediated rejection.

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