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Calcineurin-Inhibitor Minimization in Liver Transplant Patients with Calcineurin-Inhibitor-Related Renal Dysfunction: A Meta-Analysis
Published: Friday, September 09, 2011
Author: Yuan Kong et al.

by Yuan Kong, Dongping Wang, Yushu Shang, Wenhua Liang, Xiaoting Ling, Zhiyong Guo, Xiaoshun He


Introduction of calcineurin-inhibitor (CNI) has made transplantation a miracle in the past century. However, the side effects of long-term use of CNI turn out to be one of the major challenges in the current century. Among these, renal dysfunction attracts more and more attention. Herein, we undertook a meta-analysis to evaluate the efficacy and safety of calcineurin-inhibitor (CNI) minimization protocols in liver transplant recipients with CNI-related renal dysfunction.


We included randomized trials with no year and language restriction. All data were analyzed using random effect model by Review Manager 5.0. The primary endpoints were glomerular filtration rate (GFR), serum creatinine level (sCr) and creatinine clearance rate (CrCl), and the secondary endpoints were acute rejection episodes, incidence of infection and patient survival at the end of follow-up.


GFR was significantly improved in CNI minimization group than in routine CNI regimen group (Z?=?5.45, P<0.00001; I2?=?0%). Likely, sCr level was significantly lower in the CNI minimization group (Z?=?2.84, P?=?0.005; I2?=?39%). However, CrCl was not significantly higher in the CNI minimization group (Z?=?1.59, P?=?0.11; I2?=?0%). Both acute rejection episodes and patient survival were comparable between two groups (rejection: Z?=?0.01, P?=?0.99; I2?=?0%; survival: Z?=?0.28, P?=?0.78; I2?=?0%, respectively). However, current CNI minimization protocols may be related to a higher incidence of infections (Z?=?3.06, P?=?0.002; I2?=?0%).


CNI minimization can preserve or even improve renal function in liver transplant patients with renal impairment, while sharing similar short term acute rejection rate and patient survival with routine CNI regimen.