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Keywords:

  • Tacrolimus;
  • cyclosporin;
  • liver transplantation;
  • graft survival

The 1-year results of the tacrolimus versus microemulsified cyclosporin (TMC) study found a benefit with tacrolimus immunosuppression after primary liver transplants in adults with respect to freedom from graft loss and immunological failure. The integrity of the randomization process was preserved for a further 2 years for poststudy surveillance. The data after 3 years confirms the significant difference between tacrolimus and cyclosporin with tacrolimus less likely to meet the composite primary endpoint (log rank p = 0.01; relative risk 0.75; 95% CI 0.60–0.95; p = 0.016). However, freedom from death or retransplantation no longer achieves statistical significance (relative risk 0.79; 95% CI 0.62–1.02; p = 0.065). A total of 62.1% of patients randomized to tacrolimus were alive at 3 years with their original graft and still on their allocated study medication, as compared with only 41.6% in the cyclosporin limb (p < 0.001). No difference was detected between tacrolimus and cyclosporin in hepatitis-C-positive patients with the available data. The TMC study confirms after 3 years of follow-up the benefits of tacrolimus-based immunosuppression over cyclosporin using C0 monitoring.