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Kidney graft success - does age and sex matter?

New study hints at the role of estrogen in graft success and suggests that patients could benefit from personalized immunosuppression strategies

Jun 8, 2017

MONTREAL –  The success of kidney transplant is dependent on the age and sex of both the donor and the recipient, according to research published today in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. The study, which was a collaboration between a team from the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC) and the University of Montreal Hospital Research Center (CRCHUM), revealed that young women had poorer transplant outcomes compared to young men, whereas women of post-menopausal age had similar or slightly better outcomes than men of the same age. This finding opens the door to a new approach for organ transplantation, and could lead to personalized immunosuppression strategies based on age and sex.

"This is the first study to assess differences in graft outcomes between female and male recipients across the entire age spectrum,” says the study’s corresponding author Dr. Beth Foster, researcher at the RI-MUHC and pediatric nephrologist at the Montreal Children’s Hospital of the MUHC. “Previous studies did not find significant differences in graft survival between the sexes, but they focused exclusively on adults, most of whom were older. We considered the possibility that sex differences in graft survival may depend on age.”

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