Pediatric kidney transplantation has been a serious challenge from the outset. The main reason lies in the immune system of children, which presents significant differences in terms of lymphocyte subpopulation distribution and alloimmune response activation from the adult immune system. These differences are greatest between neonates and adults, while they decrease in a linear and age-dependent fashion. In the past, kidney transplantation in children was a courageous initiative, given the poorer outcomes compared with adult recipients. Today, thanks to advances in therapy protocols and a better knowledge of the pediatric immune system, graft survival in pediatric patients has significantly improved and transplantation is the standard of care for the treatment of chronic organ failure in children. Moreover, there is growing interest in the field of pediatric transplantation because of the recipients' peculiar infective risk profile, the underestimated cardiovascular risk, and the necessity to identify both new non-invasive diagnostic techniques and the characteristics that make the pediatric immune system so peculiar. Acquiring new knowledge in those fields may slow down the adoption of new therapies but, on the other hand, it may represent a starting point to provide pediatric allograft recipients with diagnostic and therapeutic advantages and ultimately achieve allograft tolerance.
|Translated title of the contribution||[Novel immunological aspects of pediatric kidney transplantation].|
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Giornale italiano di nefrologia : organo ufficiale della Società italiana di nefrologia|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 2012|
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