Background Anti-RhD immunised donors provide anti-RhD immunoglobulins used for the prevention of rhesus disease. These donors are periodically hyper-immunised (boostered) to retain a high titer level of anti-RhD. Study design and methods We analysed anti-RhD donor records from 1998 to 2016, consisting of 30,116 anti-RhD titers from 755 donors, encompassing 3,372 booster events. Various models were fit to these data to allow describing the anti-RhD titers over time. Results A random effects model with a log-linear anti-RhD titer decline over time and a saturating titer response to boostering is shown to fit the data well. This model contains two general model parameters, relating timing and maximum of the booster effect, as well as two parameters characterizing the individual donor, namely how fast the booster effect saturates with current titer and the anti-RhD decline rate. The average individual log2 decline is 0.55 per year, i.e. a 32% decline in absolute titer, with half of the donors declining between 13% and 41% per year. Their anti-RhD titer peaks around 26 days following a booster event. Boostering response reduces with higher titers at boostering; at median titer (log2 11) the mean increase per booster is log2 0.38, that is from an absolute titer of 2048 to 2665 (+30%), with half of all donors increasing between 16% and 65% in their titer. Conclusion The model describes anti-RhD titer change per individual with only four parameters, two of which are donor specific. This information can be used to enhance the blood bank’s immunisation programme, by deriving individualized immunization policies in which boostering is adjusted to the anticipated anti-RhD decline, effectiveness of boostering and titer levels required.

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Journal PLoS ONE
De Vos, A.S. (Anneke S.), van der Schoot, E, Rizopoulos, D, & Janssen, M.P. (Mart P.). (2018). Predicting anti-RhD titers in donors: Boostering response and decline rates are personal. PLoS ONE, 13(4). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0196382