Prediction of a Risk for Antibody-Mediated Rejection (AMR) by Measuring AMR-Associated Gene Expression Levels in Blood Exosomes

Prediction of a risk for antibody-mediated rejection (AMR) by measuring AMR-associated gene expression levels in blood exosomes


Tech ID: toy000967



Kidney transplants are the most common type of transplant. In 2014, over 17,000 kidney transplants took place in the US alone. A major obstacle for successful kidney transplantation, especially in HLA-sensitized (HS) patients, is antibody-mediated rejection (AMR). Kidney transplant rejection is a costly occurrence and currently there is no early diagnosis available to predict or potentially prevent AMR. Current diagnosis for AMR after kidney transplantation is typically based on 1) kidney dysfunction assessed by serum creatinine levels, 2) histological changes in kidney biopsy, and 3) existence of anti-HLA antibody in blood. With an early detection, the AMR process could be delayed or prevented, resulting in prolonged graft or patient survival, and successful transplantation. Therefore, there is a need for improved methods for diagnosing, predicting and preventing AMR, especially at an early stage.


Technology Description

• Previous studies have shown that certain genes are upregulated in biopsies obtained from patients with AMR compared to CMR (cell-mediated rejection) or no rejection. Furthermore, mRNA in whole blood or plasma is unstable and quickly degraded thus cannot be used to measure gene expression reliably.

• Dr. Mieko Toyoda at CSMC discovered that the mRNA expression levels of 7 genes are increased in AMR patients by measuring plasma exosome mRNA. Unlike mRNA in whole blood or plasma, exosomes are very stable and mRNA in plasma exosomes is thought to be protected from degradation.

• Plasma exosome mRNA were measured from 51 patients (7 AMR, 6 CMR, 38 no rejection control [18 HS/20 non-HS]). 



Simple, non-invasive diagnostic test of early prediction of antibody-mediated transplant rejection, and thus increase the kidney transplant survival rate.



This novel discovery can be further validated and developed into a diagnostic test for early prediction of AMR in organ transplant. 


Intellectual Property

PCT patent application PCT/US2017/016741 filed. 

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Wenyue Du
Senior Associate - IP Management & Licensing
Mieko Toyoda
Organ Transplant