Currently, each new donor registering with one of our DKMS donor centers is typed at high resolution for a wide selection of genetic markers. Besides human leukocyte antigen (HLA) loci class I (HLA-A, -B, -C and -E) and class II (HLA-DRB1, -DRB3/4/5, -DPA1, DQA1, DPB1 and DQB1), this selection comprises the KIR-system, MICA/B, CCR5 as well as the ABO and the RhD blood groups. Additionally, each new donor is tested for their current CMV IgG status.
This selection is made possible by the cost-efficient, high-throughput, amplicon-based next-generation sequencing workflow as implemented by our DKMS Life Science Lab.
The DKMS typing profile evolved over time, from serologic testing of HLA-A and -B only, to the current testing from swabs in a high-resolution standard by continuously adding more loci and/or increasing resolution. This extension is driven by the goal to speed up the search for a matching donor. High resolution allows to go ahead with Confirmatory Typing (CT), whereas previously, it had been necessary to perform time-consuming re-typing of low-resolution typed donors for specific searches.
In addition, scientific progress indicates a continuously growing number of genetic markers that may affect transplantation outcomes. Consequently, we adapt the applied typing profile to enable search coordinators to select the best possible matching donor.
To ensure that this is the case for the constantly expanding database of donors, we have initiated several quality programs to re-type donors who were initially typed at low resolution or to add new markers to their profile.