The impact of presensitized T lymphocytes on the development of chronic allograft nephropathy (CAN) was investigated in nude athymic LEW.RNU recipients of F344 renal allografts. The recipients (n = 8) were reconstituted with 5 × 107 T lymphocytes primed against donor skin grafts to induce graft rejection. LEW.RNU (n = 8) and euthymic LEW recipients (n = 6) which underwent no further intervention after transplantation served as control groups. Adoptive transfer of primed T cells induced CAN in LEW.RNU rats. Their kidney function decreased progressively. After 90 days a moderate glomerulopathy, tubular atrophy and interstitial fibrosis were observed, vascular changes were only mild or absent. Cellular infiltrates were predominated by CD4+ T cells and ED1+ macrophages. Deposition of tenascin and laminin was enhanced. Grafts of euthymic recipients displayed only mild signs of CAN according to the Banff criteria. These data implicate an important role for the cellular immune response in the development of CAN.
- Chronic allograft nephropathy
- Kidney transplantation
- Nude rats
- T lymphocytes
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