Myelopathy due to human T-cell leukemia virus type-1 from the donor after ABO-incompatible liver transplantation

Taiga Wakabayashi, Hideaki Obara, Morinobu Seki, Masahiro Shinoda, Minoru Kitago, Hiroshi Yagi, Yuta Abe, Kentaro Matsubara, Yohei Yamada, Go Oshima, Koichi Oki, Narihito Nagoshi, Kota Watanabe, Taizo Hibi, Osamu Itano, Ken Hoshino, Norihiro Suzuki, Tatsuo Kuroda, Yuko Kitagawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


We report the case of a 53-year-old-man who developed human T-cell leukemia virus type-1-associated myelopathy (HAM) after ABO-incompatible liver transplantation for alcoholic liver cirrhosis. The living donor was seropositive for human T-cell leukemia virus type-1 (HTLV-1) and the recipient was seronegative for HTLV-1 before transplantation. After transplantation, the recipient developed steroid-resistant acute cellular rejection, which was successfully treated using anti-thymocyte globulin, and he was eventually discharged. He underwent spinal surgery twice after the transplantation for the treatment of cervical spondylosis that had been present for a period of 9 months before the transplantation. The surgery improved his gait impairment temporarily. However, his gait impairment progressed, and magnetic resonance imaging revealed multiple sites of myelopathy. He was diagnosed with HAM 16 months after the transplantation. Pulse steroid therapy (1000 mg) was administered over a period of 3 days, and his limb paresis improved. Presently, steroid therapy is being continued, with a plan to eventually taper the dose, and he is being carefully followed up at our institution. Our case suggests that liver transplantation involving an HTLV-1-positive living donor carries the risk of virus transmission and short-term development of HAM after transplantation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-401
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of hepatology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Mar 1


  • ABO blood-type barrier
  • HTLV-1-associated myelopathy
  • Living-donor liver transplantation
  • Transmission

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology


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