Evaluating the Heterogeneity of T Cell Phenotypes in Pediatric Renal Transplant Recipients: Associations with Stable and Rejection Histology, and Additional Markers of Alloimmune Activity

Project Summary

Some children following kidney transplant have stable kidney function whilst others experience rejection and reduced function. Knowing which children are at risk would help identify who may benefit from new treatments, but we lack tests soon after transplant that can tell us. A possible early marker is the balance between two white blood cell types – those that attack foreign cells (e.g. transplant cells) and those that help accept foreign cells. We will test how this balance of white blood cells following transplant relates to kidney biopsy findings including rejection. This study will help to design research of treatments that may improve kidney transplant acceptance.

This is a cross-sectional, single-centre, cohort study of pediatric renal transplant recipients at BC Children’s Hospital. Dr. Suzanne Vercauteren is the principal investigator.

Project Status

Status: Active, data collection completed
Study Start Date: March 5, 2021
Study End Date: April 1, 2021

Project Team

Principal Investigator

Dr. Suzanne Vercauteren


Tom Blydt-Hansen, UBC Medicine, Department of Pediatrics
Shirin Kaylan, UBC Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Endocrinology & Metabolism
Megan Levings, UBC Medicine, Department of Surgery
Samantha Lang, UBC Medicine
Li Wang, UBC Medicine, Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
Michael Alastair Irvine, UBC Science, Department of Statistics

Research Team Members

Candice Wiedman - Research Assistant
Michelle Dittrick - Research Program Manager, Pathology & Laboratory Medicine

Enrollment Eligibility Criteria
  • Renal transplant recipients followed at BC Children's Hospital
  • Frozen peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) sample
    • collected at least 6 months post-transplant
    • with paired frozen urine sample from the same date
    • with paired biopsy result from the same date
  • For Aims 1-4: paired biopsy result did not show TCMR that wasadequately severe to warrant IV steroid therapy
  • For Aim 4: In addition to paired biopsy, PBMC and urine samplesduring a period of stable graft function, participant has a biopsyresult that did show TCMR sufficiently severe to require IV steroidtreatment and has paired biobanked PBMC and urine samples atthe time of rejection biopsy.

For more information, please email sotresearch@bcchr.ca.