Transmission of breast cancer by a single multiorgan donor to 4 transplant recipients

Yvette A. H. Matser, Matty L. Terpstra, Silvio Nadalin, George D. Nossent, Jan de Boer, Barbara C. van Bemmel, Susanne van Eeden, Klemens Budde, Susanne Brakemeier, Frederike J. Bemelman*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    18 Citations (Scopus)


    We report 4 cases of breast cancer transmission to transplant recipients from a single organ donor that occurred years after donation. The diagnosis of breast cancer was occult at the time of donation. All of the recipients developed a histologically similar type of breast cancer within 16months to 6years after transplantation. Three out of 4 recipients died as a result of widely metastasized disease. One of the recipients survived after transplant nephrectomy followed by cessation of immunosuppression and chemotherapy. This extraordinary case points out the often fatal consequences of donor-derived breast cancer and suggests that removal of the donor organ and restoration of immunity can induce complete remission.

    In this case report, the authors describe the unfortunate event of breast cancer transmission from a multi-organ donor to four recipients.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1810-1814
    Number of pages5
    JournalAmerican Journal of Transplantation
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - Jul-2018


    • clinical decision-making
    • clinical research
    • practice
    • complication: malignant
    • donors and donation: deceased
    • organ transplantation in general

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