What is the role of basiliximab (Simulect) in immunosuppression after solid organ transplantation?

Updated: Jan 04, 2016
  • Author: Bethany Pellegrino, MD; Chief Editor: Mary C Mancini, MD, PhD, MMM  more...
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Monoclonal anti-CD25 antibody

Basiliximab (Simulect) and daclizumab (Zenapax) are chimeric and humanized antimonoclonal antibodies that target the IL-2 receptor (CD25). Clinically, both agents are very similar, and both are used for induction. These agents bind to the IL-2 receptor α-chain (CD25 antigen) on activated T cells, depleting them and inhibiting IL-2–induced T-cell activation. Daclizumab was withdrawn from the United States market because of diminished use and emergence of other effective therapies.

These agents have a very low prevalence of adverse effects, although hypersensitivity reactions have been reported with basiliximab, albeit rarely. Induction treatment with basiliximab requires 2 doses, and no monitoring is required. Induction with daclizumab requires 5 doses but 2 may suffice; no monitoring is required.

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