Intestinal Bacteremia After Liver Transplantation is a Risk Factor for Recurrence of Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis

Ruslan A Mammadov, Jasmijn W Selten, Henk P Roest, Cornelia J Verhoeven, Luca Maroni, Sandra I Bril, Dagmar Tolenaars, Pravesh S Gadjradj, Stan F J van de Graaf, Ronald P J Oude Elferink, Jaap Kwekkeboom, Herold J Metselaar, Maikel P Peppelenbosch, Ulrich Beuers, Jan N M IJzermans, Luc J W van der Laan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) is a chronic progressive pathological process, related to inflammatory bowel disease and subsequent bacterial translocation. Liver transplantation (LT) is the only curative therapy, but outcomes are compromised by recurrence of PSC (rPSC). The aim of the study was to investigate a potential link between intestinal bacteremia, fucosyltransferase-2 (FUT2), and rPSC after LT.

METHODS: LT recipients with PSC (n = 81) or without PSC (n = 271) were analyzed for clinical outcomes and positive bacterial blood cultures. A link between bacteremia and the genetic variant of the FUT2 gene was investigated.

RESULTS: The incidence of inflammatory bowel disease was significantly higher in PSC recipients but not associated with rPSC. Bacteremia occurred in 31% of PSC recipients. The incidence of rPSC was 37% and was significantly more common in patients with intestinal bacteremia versus no bacteremia (82% versus 30%; P = 0.003). The nonsecretor polymorphism of the FUT2 gene was identified as a genetic risk factor for both intestinal bacteremia and rPSC. Combined FUT2 genotype and intestinal bacteremia in recipients resulted in the highest risk for rPSC (hazard ratio, 15.3; P < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS: Thus, in this article, we showed that bacterial translocation is associated with rPSC after LT and related to the FUT2 nonsecretor status.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1764-1775
Number of pages12
Issue number8
Early online date29 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2023

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