DOI: 10.3390/microorganisms12010065 ISSN: 2076-2607

BKPyV DNAemia in Kidney Transplant Recipients Undergoing Regular Screening: A Single-Centre Cohort Study

Daniel B. Rasmussen, Dina L. Møller, Sebastian R. Hamm, Álvaro H. Borges, Alex C. Y. Nielsen, Nikolai S. Kirkby, Søren S. Sørensen, Susanne D. Nielsen
  • Virology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Microbiology

Infection with BK polyomavirus (BKPyV) is a common opportunistic infection after kidney transplantation (KT) and may affect graft function. We aimed to determine the incidence, risk factors, and clinical outcomes of BKPyV DNAemia in a prospective cohort of 601 KT recipients transplanted from 2012 to 2020. BKPyV PCR on plasma was performed at days 60, 90, 180, 270, and 360 post-KT. Any BKPyV DNAemia was defined as a single BKPyV DNA of ≥1000 copies/mL. Severe BKPyV DNAemia was defined as two consecutive BKPyV DNA of ≥10,000 copies/mL. Cumulative incidences were investigated using the Aalen–Johansen estimator, and the risk factors were investigated in Cox proportional hazard models. The incidence of any BKPyV DNAemia and severe BKPyV DNAemia was 21% (18–25) and 13% (10–16) at one year post-KT, respectively. Recipient age > 50 years (aHR, 1.72; 95% CI 1.00–2.94; p = 0.049), male sex (aHR, 1.96; 95% CI 1.17–3.29; p = 0.011), living donors (aHR, 1.65; 95% CI 1.03–2.74; p = 0.045), and >3 HLA-ABDR mismatches (aHR, 1.72; 95% CI 1.01–2.94; p = 0.046) increased the risk of severe BKPyV DNAemia. Any BKPyV DNAemia was associated with an increased risk of graft function decline (aHR, 2.26; 95% CI 1.00–5.12; p = 0.049), and severe BKPyV DNAemia was associated with an increased risk of graft loss (aHR, 3.18; 95% CI 1.06–9.58; p = 0.039). These findings highlight the importance of BKPyV monitoring post-KT.

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