A preliminary study searching for the right dose of tacrolimus in very young (≤4 years) renal transplant patients

Lisa C. Martial, Ruud H.J. Verstegen, Elisabeth A.M. Cornelissen, Rob E. Aarnoutse, Michiel F. Schreuder, Roger J.M. Brüggemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: The Radboudumc Amalia Children's hospital in the Netherlands has a programme for renal transplantation in children aged ≤4 years. Children receive chronic corticosteroid sparing immunosuppressive therapy that consists of tacrolimus and mycophenolate mofetil. This work aimed to describe the PK of tacrolimus in children ≤4 years with renal transplants. Methods: Paediatric renal transplant patients aged ≤4 years were included in this analysis. A PK curve of tacrolimus recorded ≤3 weeks after transplantation has been standard of care in our institution and aided in adjusting the dose in each patient to attain a target AUC0–12h of 210 μg h/l early after transplantation. Key findings: Eight patients were included. The first two patients received an initial twice-daily regimen and the subsequent six patients a three-times daily regimen. Median dose-corrected AUCtau was 63 μg h/l. AUC target attainment was 37.5%. Of the remaining patients, two had an AUC very close to (around 10% below) the target. Conclusions: Large interindividual variability of tacrolimus was observed and showed suboptimal AUC target attainment. In this population, an even more aggressive approach of higher doses (e.g. 0.4 mg/kg per day) and more early AUC determination should be considered. This should be evaluated prospectively in a larger group of patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1366-1372
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • children
  • immunosuppressant
  • pharmacokinetics
  • therapeutic drug monitoring
  • transplantation


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