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Kidney transplantation today has excellent short-term outcomes, but long-term graft survival has not improved in a parallel fashion. The goal of immunosuppressive therapy is to balance the beneficial effects of reducing acute rejection while minimizing adverse effects from oversuppression including the development of infections, malignancy, and cardiovascular risk factors. In general, current immunosuppressive protocols use combinations of immunosuppressive agents with different mechanisms of action to maximize efficacy and minimize the toxicity of each drug. During the past decade, there has been a growing interest in identifying regimens that permit the minimization of calcineurin inhibitors or corticosteroids in an attempt to decrease nephrotoxicity and metabolic side effects. The emergence of new immunosuppressive agents and tolerance protocols appear promising as a means to deliver immunosuppression without long-term toxicity. Ultimately, the goal of prescribing immunosuppression is to transition from empiric therapy to one of individualized therapy.



Article Category: Transplanation