Introduction and creation of the group
Kidney transplantation (KT) represents the most effective treatment in patients with end-stage renal disease, resulting in a higher long-term survival rate and a better quality of life in comparison to dialysis. Currently, in Europe, more than 20,000 KTs are performed each year. Given the epidemiological and clinical significance of chronic renal failure and KT, as well as the important role of urologists in KT, there has been a critical need to create a dedicated working team on this topic within the European Association of Urology (EAU) Young Academic Urologists (YAU) Office.
Against this background, the YAU KT working group was conceived and designed by Dr. Angelo Territo, a young urologist who, since 2015, has devoted his energies to uro-oncology and KT at Fundació Puigvert (Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain). Now, in June 2021, the group has finally been created thanks to the support of the EAU–YAU board. It will aim to support young, talented physicians in advancing the field of KT through multidisciplinary scientific collaborations.
KT is a challenging task and we believe that, nowadays, it cannot be carried out optimally without the involvement of urologists. Therefore, one of the main missions of the group will be to emphasize the role of urologists in this broad and fascinating field. However, given the complexity of KT, it can involve different medical and surgical specialists, working together as a multidisciplinary team. Accordingly, in addition to urologists, general and vascular surgeons, nephrologists, and transplant coordinators will be positively considered as potential group members, provided they meet the YAU’s selection criteria.
In addition, the YAU KT working group recognizes that collaboration with other YAU groups, EAU sections (ESTU, ERUS, etc.), and the EAU Guidelines Office will be fundamental in proactively strengthening collaborations and developing clinical, basic, and translational research projects in all areas of KT.
The YAU KT working group has several aims with respect to research activities and educational projects.
Research activities will focus on various aspects of KT in the settings of both conventional open surgery and robotic surgery. More specifically, the group will investigate the following topics with a view to publishing systematic reviews, original articles, and book chapters:
- urological malignancies in KT recipients;
- polycystic renal disease and KT;
- the learning curve in open KT;
- the use of innovative devices to achieve better graft preservation during KT.
Furthermore, a multicenter shared database will allow assessment of the outcomes of KT across urological centers in Europe (and beyond), helping to achieve the above-mentioned scientific goals.
In terms of educational projects, the KT group will support:
- the development of a structured curriculum for KT;
- surgical training in high-volume centers for KT, including organ retrieval as well as transplant from both living and deceased donors (clinical visits/fellowships).
Finally, collaboration among European countries will be encouraged in order to extend the kidney exchange programs “beyond the national borders”.