Sustained impairment of human cytomegalovirus (HCMV)-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cell response is responsible for recurrent episodes of disseminated HCMV infection in a D+R- hand transplant recipient

Fausto Baldanti, Giovanna Lucchini, Daniele Lilleri, Marco Lanzetta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) infection is the major viral complication in solid organ transplant recipients. Seronegative recipents (R-) of organs from seropositive donors (D+) appear to be at higher risk of developing symptomatic HCMV infection. To what extent systemic life-threatening complications can be risked for non-life-saving transplant procedures? A case report describing successful treatment of repeated episodes of active HCMV infection in a D+R- hand recipient in the absence of HCMV-specific T-cell immunity is presented. In the attempt to save both the patient and the transplanted hand, a preemptive treatment strategy was adopted with the aim to boost the constitution of the virus-specific T-cell immune response and simultaneously avoid onset of disease. Careful monitoring of HCMV load in blood and HCMV-specific T-cell immunity guided administration of repeated courses of antiviral treatment and avoided emergence of HCMV-related symptoms. Following establishment of HCMV-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T-cell response, preemptive treatment was no longer required due to sustained HCMV disappearance from blood. The patient is now well, and his hand too. In conclusion, evaluation of virus-specific T-cell immunity is of crucial importance in D+R- transplant recipients and careful monitoring of HCMV-specific T cell mediated response should always parallel monitoring of HCMV load in transplant recipients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number155
JournalCases Journal
Volume1
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 17 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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