National Kidney Registry Facilitates First 0 HLA Mismatched KPD Transplant for a Compatible Pair

The National Kidney Registry has announced the first successful 0 HLA mismatched kidney transplant for a patient who entered paired exchange with a compatible donor.

The pair was evaluated by the Johns Hopkins Hospital Transplant Program in April and rather than proceed with a direct donation transplant, the compatible pair opted to enter paired exchange to find a better matched kidney. A better match improves the chances that a kidney transplant will last longer. The National Kidney Registry found the 0 HLA mismatched donor in two days. The donor that was matched to the Hopkins patient had entered the NKR through University of Wisconsin Hospital in Madison.

Janet Hiller, the lead transplant coordinator at Hopkins, commented, “We have been organizing swaps for over 15 years but have never before found a 0 HLA mismatch for a compatible pair. This case is truly remarkable and demonstrates the power of a large pool of donors to find the best possible match for a compatible pair. This is a great example of why compatible pairs should consider participating in national paired exchange.”

“We are grateful to Hopkins and the compatible pair from Hopkins. Their enrollment in the NKR provided a life-saving transplant opportunity for a hard to match patient at our center. Without the compatible pair from Hopkins, our patient would not have received a transplant so quickly,” added Karen Miller, the lead transplant coordinator at Madison.

“The National Kidney Registry is witnessing significant increases in the number of compatible pairs that are enrolling in paired exchange. Recent published research indicates that the HLA match is the largest contributor to transplant longevity and this HLA match is as good as it gets,” said Garet Hil, Founder and CEO of the National Kidney Registry

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