Interstitial fibrosis evolution on early sequential screening renal allograft biopsies using quantitative image analysis.Am J Transplant. 2011 Jul; 11(7):1456-63.AJ
Screening renal biopsies (RB) may assess early changes of interstitial fibrosis (IF) after transplantation. The aim of this study was to quantify IF by automatic color image analysis on sequential RB. We analyzed RB performed at day (D) 0, month (M) 3 and M12 from 140 renal transplant recipients with a program of color segmentation imaging. The mean IF score was 19 ± 9% at D0, 27 ± 11% at M3 and 32 ± 11% at M12 with a 8% progression during the first 3 months and 5% between M3 and M12. IF at M3 was correlated with estimated glomerular rate (eGFR) at M3, 12 and 24 (p < 0.02) and IF at M12 with eGFR at M12 and 48 (p < 0.05). Furthermore, IF evolution between D0 and M3 (ΔIFM3-D0) was correlated with eGFR at M24, 36 and 48 (p < 0.03). IF at M12 was significantly associated with male donor gender and tacrolimus dose (p = 0.03). ΔIFM3-D0 was significantly associated with male donor gender, acute rejection episodes (p = 0.04) and diabetes mellitus (p = 0.02). Thus, significant IF is already present before transplantation. IF evolution is more important during the first 3 months and has some predictive ability for change in GFR. Intervention to decrease IF should be applied early, i.e. before 3 months, after transplantation.