Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection has been implicated in the pathogenesis of allograft rejection in heart transplant (HT) recipients. The effect of a CMV infection on the gene expression profiling (GEP, AlloMap) scores in the absence of acute rejection is not known.Data from 14,985 samples collected from 2,288 adult HT recipients enrolled in Outcomes AlloMap Registry were analyzed. Patients with known CMV serology at the time of HT who had at least 1 AlloMap score reported during follow-up were included. AlloMap scores for those patients with CMV (but no ongoing rejection) were compared with those who were never infected. An exploratory analysis on the impact of CMV on available donor-derived cell-free DNA (AlloSure) was also performed.A total of 218 patients (10%) were reported to have CMV infection after transplantation. AlloMap score in those samples with CMV infection (n?=?311) had a GEP score (34; range: 29-36) significantly higher than the GEP score from samples (n?=?14,674) obtained in the absence of CMV infection (30; range: 26-34; p < 0.0001). Both asymptomatic viremia and CMV disease demonstrated significantly higher AlloMap scores than no CMV infection samples (median scores: 33, 35, and 30, respectively; p < 0.0001). AlloSure levels, available for 776 samples, were not significantly different (median: 0.23% in 18 samples with CMV infection vs 0.15% in 776 samples without CMV infection; p?=?0.66).CMV infection in HT recipients is associated with an increase in AlloMap score, whereas AlloSure results do not appear to be impacted. This information should be considered when clinically interpreting abnormal/high AlloMap scores in HT recipients.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.healun.2020.11.008
View details for PubMedID 33341360