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Kidney Week

Abstract: PO2171

Disease-Specific Tissue RNAs as Diagnostic Tool for Kidney Transplant Pathology

Session Information

Category: Transplantation

  • 1902 Transplantation: Clinical


  • Bezeljak, Neva, University Medical Centre Ljubljana Department of Nephrology, Ljubljana, Please choose …, Slovenia
  • Bostjancic, Emanuela, 3Institute of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Please choose …, Slovenia
  • Kojc, Nika, Institute of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana,, Ljubljana, Please choose …, Slovenia
  • Arnol, Miha, University Medical Centre Ljubljana Department of Nephrology, Ljubljana, Please choose …, Slovenia
  • Veceric Haler, Zeljka, University Medical Centre Ljubljana Department of Nephrology, Ljubljana, Please choose …, Slovenia

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play an important role in the development of renal diseases as epigenetic regulators of gene expression. However, there are limited data to date on tissue miRNA expression in transplantation-related kidney disease.


Study enrolled fifty-six transplant kidney patients with surveillance/indication kidney transplant biopsy including pretransplantation biopsies, which were divided into four (four + control) groups. The control group (CG, n = 12) consisted of patients without patohistological changes on surveillance biopsy. Patients with indication biopsy due to an increase in serum creatinine and nonspecific chronic changes in patohistological analysis were in the nonspecific group (NS, n = 6). The other three groups consisted of histologically proven antibody-mediated rejection (ABMR, n = 13), recurrent glomerulonephritis (rGN, n = 15), and acute tubular injury/necrosis (ATN, n = 10). We analyzed the expression of 6 selected miRNAs (miR-29c, miR-126, miR-146a, miR-150, miR-155, miR-223) and compared them with the respective disease process.


When comparing mRNA expression before and after transplantation, there was no statistically significant difference in the expression of the analyzed miRNAs in CG, NS and rGN, but we observed a statistically significant change in the expression profile of miR-146a and miR-155 after transplantation in patients with ATN and ABMR.
Post-transplant biopsies showed differential expression of miR-146a and miR-155 in ABMR and NS compared to CG, miR-155 in rGN compared to CG, miR-146a in ATN compared to CG and miR-223 in NS compared to CG. All but miR-146a showed differential expression in pretransplantation biopsies before transplantation of either NS, rGN, ABMR or ATN compared to CG, but the difference in expression after transplantation was more pronounced.


Our results suggest that miR-146a and miR-155 play an important role in pathological processes after kidney transplantation and also support the hypothesis that there are differences at the molecular level of the donor kidney that may predispose the kidney to certain types of patohistological damage.