UCSF nephrologist Flavio Vincenti, MD, is the lead author of a paper in the March 2010 issue of the American Journal of Transplantation that reports results from a Phase III clinical trial for a new drug that selectively blocks immune suppression for kidney transplants. The drug, belatacept, is given to kidney-transplant recipients to prevent the immune system from rejecting the new organ. Vincenti and his co-investigators found that belatacept may be as effective as the commonly used anti-rejection drug cyclosporine, but with fewer side effects and superior kidney function after 12 months.
“Our findings show that this will be a novel and more specific way of suppressing the immune system with less toxicity,” said Vincenti. “It will target the specific responses that cause rejection of transplanted organs with less damage to other systems of the body.”
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