miRNA as potential biomarkers after liver transplantation: A systematic review
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The publication "miRNA as potential biomarkers after liver transplantation: A systematic review" is now available online in Transplantation Reviews. Authors are Pia F. Koch, Kristina Ludwig, Felix Krenzien, Karl H. Hillebrandt, Wenzel Schöning, Johann Pratschke, Nathanael Raschzok, Igor M. Sauer, and Simon Moosburner.

Early and accurate diagnosis of acute cellular rejection (ACR) and graft complications after liver transplantation is crucial for timely intervention and improved patient outcomes, but their diagnosis rely currently on invasive biopsy sampling, thus prompting the search for non-invasive Biomarkers. MicroRNA (miRNA) have emerged as promising biomarkers in various pathological conditions, and their potential utility in diagnosing acute cellular rejection after liver transplantation has gained significant interest.

This systematic review analyzes studies exploring miRNA as biomarkers for ACR and graft dysfunction in liver transplantation (PROSPERO ID CRD42023465278). The Cochrane Collaboration tool for assessing risk of bias was employed. Population data, identified miRNA and their dynamic regulation, as well as event prediction were compared. Data extraction and quality assessment were performed independently by two reviewers.

The results highlight the potential of miRNA as specific, non-invasive biomarkers for ACR and graft dysfunction following liver transplantation. However, further research is needed to validate these findings and establish standardized diagnostic panels to incorporate them into clinical practice and explore miRNA-based therapies in the future.
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Our manuscript "Depletion of donor dendritic cells ameliorates immunogenicity of both skin and hind limb transplants" has been accepted for publication in Frontiers in Immunology, section Alloimmunity and Transplantation. Authors are Muhammad Imtiaz Ashraf, Joerg Mengwasser, Anja Reutzel-Selke, Dietrich Polenz, Kirsten Führer, Steffen Lippert, Peter Tang, Edward Michaelis, Rusan Catar, Johann Pratschke, Christian Witzel, Igor M. Sauer, Stefan G. Tullius, and Barbara Kern.

Acute cellular rejection remains a significant obstacle affecting successful outcomes of organ transplantation including vascularized composite tissue allografts (VCA). Donor antigen presenting cells (APC), particularly dendritic cells (DC), orchestrate early alloimmune responses by activating recipient effector T cells. Employing a targeted approach, we investigated the impact of donor-derived conventional DC (cDC) and APC on the immunogenicity of skin and skin-containing VCA grafts, using mouse models of skin and hind limb transplantation.
By post-transplantation day 6, skin grafts demonstrated severe rejections, characterized by predominance of recipient CD4 T cells. In contrast, hind limb grafts showed moderate rejection, primarily infiltrated by CD8 T cells. While donor depletion of cDC and APC reduced frequencies, maturation, and activation of DC in all analysed tissues of skin transplant recipients, reduction in DC activities was only observed in the spleen of hind limb recipients. Donor cDC and APC depletion did not impact all lymphocyte compartments but significantly affected CD8 T cells and activated CD4 T in lymph nodes of skin recipients. Moreover, both donor APC and cDC depletion attenuated the Th17 immune response, evident by significantly reduced Th17 (CD4+IL-17+) cells in the spleen of skin recipients and reduced levels of IL-17E and lymphotoxin-α in the serum samples of both skin and hind limb recipients. In conclusion, our findings underscore the highly immunogenic nature of skin component in VCA. The depletion of donor APC and cDC mitigates the immunogenicity of skin grafts while exerting minimal impact on VCA.




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