Transmission of Babesia microti Parasites by Solid Organ Transplantation

TitleTransmission of Babesia microti Parasites by Solid Organ Transplantation
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsBrennan MB, Herwaldt BL, Kazmierczak JJ, Weiss JW, Klein CL, Leith CP, He R, Oberley MJ, Tonnetti L, Wilkins PP, Gauthier GM
KeywordsBabesia microti, Babesiosis, Erythrocyte Transfusion, hemolytic anemia, human babesiosis, kidney transplant, Minnesota, Organ Transplantation, parasites, protozoa, tissue donor, United States, vector-borne infections, Wisconsin

Babesia microti, an intraerythrocytic parasite, is tickborne in nature. In contrast to transmission by blood transfusion, which has been well documented, transmission associated with solid organ transplantation has not been reported. We describe parasitologically confirmed cases of babesiosis diagnosed ≈8 weeks posttransplantation in 2 recipients of renal allografts from an organ donor who was multiply transfused on the day he died from traumatic injuries. The organ donor and recipients had no identified risk factors for tickborne infection. Antibodies against B. microti parasites were not detected by serologic testing of archived pretransplant specimens. However, 1 of the organ donor's blood donors was seropositive when tested postdonation and had risk factors for tick exposure. The organ donor probably served as a conduit of Babesia parasites from the seropositive blood donor to both kidney recipients. Babesiosis should be included in the differential diagnosis of unexplained fever and hemolytic anemia after blood transfusion or organ transplantation.

Alternate JournalEmerg Infect Dis
Notify Library Reference ID4623

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