Clinical findings, pathology, and outcomes of C3GN after kidney transplantation

Ladan Zand, Elizabeth C Lorenz, Fernando G Cosio, Fernando C Fervenza, Samih H Nasr, Manish J Gandhi, Richard J H Smith, Sanjeev Sethi
Journal of the American Society of Nephrology: JASN 2014, 25 (5): 1110-7
C3 glomerulonephritis (C3GN) results from abnormalities in the alternative pathway of complement, and it is characterized by deposition of C3 with absent or scant Ig deposition. In many patients, C3GN progresses to ESRD. The clinical features, pathology, and outcomes of patients with C3GN receiving kidney transplantation are unknown. Between 1996 and 2010, we identified 21 patients at our institution who received a kidney transplant because of ESRD from C3GN. The median age at the time of initial diagnosis of C3GN at kidney biopsy was 20.8 years. The median time from native kidney biopsy to dialysis or transplantation was 42.3 months. Of 21 patients, 14 (66.7%) patients developed recurrent C3GN in the allograft. The median time to recurrence of disease was 28 months. Graft failure occurred in 50% of patients with recurrent C3GN, with a median time of 77 months to graft failure post-transplantation. The remaining 50% of patients had functioning grafts, with a median follow-up of 73.9 months. The majority of patients had hematuria and proteinuria at time of recurrence. Three (21%) patients were positive for monoclonal gammopathy and had a faster rate of recurrence and graft loss. Kidney biopsy at the time of recurrence showed mesangial proliferative GN in eight patients and membranoproliferative GN in six patients. All allograft kidney biopsies showed bright C3 staining (2-3+), with six biopsies also showing trace/1+ staining for IgM and/or IgG. To summarize, C3GN recurs in 66.7% of patients, and one half of the patients experience graft failure caused by recurrence.

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