April 14, 2012

Can Immune Cell Function Assay Identify Patients at Risk of Infection or Rejection? A Meta-Analysis


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An assay to quantify how immunosuppressed an individual is would be a great asset in clinical practice. The Cylex ImmuKnow assay measures ATP-release from CD4+ T cells and is used in some transplant centers to guide management of immunosuppression. In this study, the authors performed a meta-analysis to determine whether this assay could identify the risk of infection or rejection post-transplant. Using nine studies that met the inclusion criteria, the authors conclude that this assay has poor sensitivity and specificity for prediction of both rejection and infection. Future assays to predict rejection may be based on function of additional T cell subsets. In addition, pathogen-specific immune assays may be more useful in monitoring for infection.