Tacrolimus and steroids versus ciclosporin microemulsion, steroids, and azathioprine in children undergoing liver transplantation: Randomised European multicentre trial

Deirdre Kelly, Paloma Jara, Burkhard Rodeck, Panayotis Lykavieris, Martin Burdelski, Michael Becker, Bruno Gridelli, Olivier Boillot, Javier Manzanares, Raymond Reding

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background Results of studies in adult recipients of liver allograft suggest that tacrolimus is more efficacious than ciclosporin microemulsion in the prevention of acute rejection. We aimed to compare these drugs in children undergoing liver transplantation. Methods This 12-month multicentre, open-label, parallel-group, randomised study compared a dual tacrolimus regimen (tacrolimus/corticosteroids, n=93) with a triple ciclosporin microemulsion regimen (ciclosporin microemulsion/corticosteroids/azathioprine, n=92) in children who had had liver transplants (age ≤16 years, bodyweight ≤40 kg). Initial oral daily doses were 0·30 mg/kg for tacrolimus and 10 mg/kg for ciclosporin microemulsion. Primary endpoint was the incidence of and time to first histologically proven acute rejection. We excluded patients from analysis if they did not receive the study drug, or were given incorrect medication. Otherwise patients were analysed in accordance with their random treatment allocation, irrespective of whether they switched medication during the trial. Findings Median age was 22 months (IQR 9-56) in the tacrolimus group and 17 months (9-54) in the ciclosporin microemulsion group. We noted no difference between treatment groups with respect to patient survival (93·4% vs 92·2%; p=0·77) or graft survival (92·3% vs 85·4%; p=0·16) at month 12 after transplant. The acute rejection free rate at study end (Kaplan-Meier method) was 55·5% for patients on tacrolimus and 40·2% for patients on ciclosporin microemulsion (p=0·0288). The Kaplan-Meier estimate of patients free from corticosteroid-resistant acute rejection at study end was 94·0% for tacrolimus-treated patients and 70·4% for ciclosporin-microemulsion-treated patients (p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1054-1061
Number of pages8
JournalLancet
Volume364
Issue number9439
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 18 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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