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Prospective monitoring of cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, BK virus, and JC virus infections on belatacept therapy after a kidney transplant.

Author(s): Bassil N(1), Rostaing L, Mengelle C, Kallab S, Esposito L, Guitard J, Cardeau-Desangles I, Weclawiak H, Izopet J, Kamar N.

Affiliation(s): Author information: (1)Department of Nephrology, Dialysis and Organ Transplantation, CHU Rangueil, Toulouse, France.

Publication date & source: 2014, Exp Clin Transplant. , 12(3):212-9

OBJECTIVES: Few data regarding viral replication in patients receiving belatacept are available. The aim of this single-center study was to compare the incidence of viral infections (cytomegalovirus, Epstein Barr virus, BK virus, and JC virus), in 62 de novo kidney transplant patients enrolled in the BENEFIT studies, receiving either belatacept (n=42) or cyclosporine (n=20). MATERIALS AND METHODS: By means of polymerase chain reaction, belatacept-treated patients were tested for cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, BK virus, and JC virus infections monthly for 36 months, monthly for the first 6 months, and then quarterly for 36 months in cyclosporine-treated patients. Additional samples were obtained when a viral infection was suspected. RESULTS: The number of positive cytomegalovirus, BK virus, or JC virus viremias over the number of polymerase chain reactions performed through all 3 years was similar in both groups. Conversely, over the 3-year study, the number of positive Epstein-Barr virus viremias over the number of Epstein-Barr virus polymerase chain reactions performed was significantly higher in the belatacept group (76% vs 50%; P = .047). The number of Epstein-Barr virus primary infection was similar in both groups, while the number of Epstein-Barr virus reactivation was higher in the belatacept group. CONCLUSIONS: Epstein-Barr virus replication occurs more often in patients receiving belatacept, than it does in those receiving cyclosporine.

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