Impact of mycophenolate mofetil versus azathioprine on early recurrence of hepatitis C after liver transplantation

A. Kornberg, B. Küpper, A. Tannapfel, M. Hommann, J. Scheele

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35 Scopus citations


The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) on incidence, delay, severity and clinical course of early recurrent hepatitis C after liver transplantation (LT). A total of 21 hepatitis C virus (HCV)-positive patients after LT were prospectively enrolled in this study. All of them received a quadruple induction cyclosporine A (CsA)-based immunosuppression, augmented by MMF (n=12) or by azathioprine (n=9, AZA). MMF tended to delay recurrent disease (50±35 versus 35±35 weeks, P=0.5) with significantly lower levels of aminotransferases (P<0.05). Furthermore, patients under MMF revealed less severe allograft fibrosis at disease recurrence (stage of fibrosis: 1.5±0.5 versus 2.2±1.2; P=0.07). But stage of fibrosis significantly increased in the MMF-group (P<0.05) during 6 months of antiviral treatment. Three patients in the MMF-group and none of the controls suffered from severe fibrosing cholestatic recurrent hepatitis C. Initial post-LT administration of MMF tended to delay recurrent hepatitis C and to limit initial HCV-related biochemical and morphological graft dysfunction. But during clinical follow-up, its immunosuppressive capabilities exceeded possible antiviral properties, finally leading to significant progression of graft fibrosis. Thus, concomitant dose reduction of other basic immunosuppressants might be useful in this clinical setting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-115
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Immunopharmacology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Fibrosis
  • Hepatitis C
  • Immunosuppression
  • Interferon-α2b ribavirin
  • Mycophenolate mofetil


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