Tolerability and side effects of anti-CD3-immunotoxin in preclinical testing in kidney and pancreatic islet transplant recipients

Academic Article


  • Introduction. Anti-CD3-immunotoxin (α-CD3-IT) promotes allograft tolerance in nonhuman primates owing to efficient depletion of sessile and circulating T cells. Common side effects of vascular leak syndrome, hepatotoxicity, and nephrotoxicity have limited tolerability of other immunotoxins. We report on preclinical studies of α-CD3-IT-related side effects. Methods. Normal rhesus monkeys received a kidney transplant and α- CD3-IT alone (on day -to +2) or in combination with brief peritransplant adjunctive immunosuppressive therapy. Some received donor CD34+ cells. Blood chemistries, complete blood count, weight, liver, and kidney biopsies were examined for immunotoxin-related changes. Five spontaneously diabetic primates also received α-CD3-IT, three of whom had a pancreas islet transplant. Results. The main side effect of α-CD3-IT, vascular leak syndrome, was entirely prevented by adjunctive immunosuppressive therapy. Renal and liver function tests and biopsies revealed a lack of nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity. All had transient weight loss (14±5%). Without infusion of donor CD34+ cells, 97% had full weight recovery. Of those given donor CD34+ cells, 50% were euthanized for wasting. Conclusions. Side effects of α-CD3-IT are manageable and should not prevent therapeutic application.
  • Published In

  • Transplantation  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Contreras JL; Eckhoff DE; Cartner S; Frenette L; Thomas FT; Robbin ML; Neville DM; Thomas JM
  • Start Page

  • 215
  • End Page

  • 219
  • Volume

  • 68
  • Issue

  • 2