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Abstract: SA-PO1086

Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia in Solid-Organ Transplant Recipients: A Single-Center Experience

Session Information

Category: Transplantation

  • 2102 Transplantation: Clinical


  • Cholin, Liza, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, United States
  • Pesavento, Todd E., The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, United States
  • Singh, Priyamvada, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, United States

To date, only two case series on chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) in solid-organ transplants (SOT) has been published which showed an increased risk for severe infections and mortality. The aim of our study was to add to the limited literature on this topic, by evaluating the overall safety of transplanting such patients.


A 10 year retrospective chart review was performed to identify patients with a diagnosis of CLL who had undergone SOT at a large transplant center. Post-transplant outcomes including infectious complications, graft loss, and mortality were reviewed.


A total of 10 CLL patients were studied: 5 had a CLL diagnosis pre-SOT, and 5 were diagnosed with CLL post-SOT (table 1). All kidney transplant recipients received anti-thymocyte globulin for induction, while liver transplant recipients received either Basiliximab or steroids. Maintenance immunosuppression (IS) therapy amongst the SOT recipients was similar, with 8 out of 10 patients receiving a calcineurin-inhibitor and mycophenolate derivative. Average follow up for pre-SOT CLL patients was 2.9 years (min 1, max 6) with 1 out of 2 deaths attributed to an infectious complication (COVID). Post-SOT CLL patients had a mean of 9 years between transplantation and CLL diagnosis. On an average follow up of 2.8 (min 0, max 7) years after CLL diagnosis, 3 out of 5 post-SOT CLL patients had death as an outcome.


Short-term outcomes in SOT recipients with a diagnosis of CLL prior to transplantation appear acceptable. However, SOT recipients who developed CLL post-transplantation seem to have an increased mortality risk. Infectious complications are a known cause for increased morbidity and mortality in CLL patients. As such, reduction in maintenance IS therapy in patients who are years out from transplantation may allow for improved outcomes.

Outcomes of patients with CLL diagnosis
 Patient 1Patient 2Patient 3Patient 4Patient 5Patient 6Patient 7Patient 8Patient 9Patient 10
Type of transplantLiving kidneyLiving kidneyDBD kidneyDCD liver DBD liver DBD kidney-pancreasDBD kidney-pancreasLiving kidney DBD liver DBD liver
Demographics52 y.o., male, white63 y.o., male, white71 y.o., female, white66 y.o., male, white59 y.o., female, white37 y.o., male, white59 y.o., male, white42 y.o., female, black64 y.o., male, black63 y.o., female, white
Years from CLL diagnosis to transplant (if pre-SOT)051734N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Years from transplant to CLL diagnosis (if post-SOT)N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A252279
Years since transplant641.5212796710
Infectious complicationsCOVID pneumoniaNoSeptic arthritis, recurrent UTIsNoCMV viremia, COVID, chronic foot woundNoSepsis, C. diff colitis, recurrent UTIsSepsis, C. diff colitis, recurrent UTIsNoSepsis due to strep bacteremia
Death-censored graft lossNoNoNoNoNoNoYes, pancreas onlyYesNoNo
Death (cause)Yes (COVID)NoYes (PEA arrest)NoNoYes (malignancyNoNoYes (unknown)Yes (sepsis)