Background of APOLLO

It has been known for decades that African Americans have higher risk for end-stage renal disease and require dialysis treatments 3 to 4 times more often than other racial and ethnic groups. In 2010, a major research discovery showed that small changes in a single gene, the APOL1 gene, contributes to this increased risk of kidney disease in African Americans. Preliminary data suggests that variation in the APOL1 gene can also impact outcomes after kidney transplantation and affect the safety of living kidney donation for the kidney recipient. Based on this, the National Institutes of Health is launching the APOLLO study or the APOL1 Long-term Kidney Transplantation Outcomes Network.

The purpose of APOLLO is to improve the lives of those who donate or receive a kidney by learning more about the genetic variations in the APOL1 gene that are found in some people of African descent. This collaborative effort engages the existing network of Organ Procurement Organizations and HLA Laboratories, a community advisory council comprised of kidney donors, recipients and advocates, and approximately 240 transplant programs across the United States – all with the sole mission of better understanding the impact of the APOL1 gene on kidney transplantation outcomes.

Results of the APOLLO study have the potential to improve outcomes for all people with end-stage renal disease. There may be more kidney transplants and the safety of living kidney donation may be improved as a result of this research. However, your contribution is integral to the success of this effort. Please see a brief instructional video for your respective organization below, which details APOLLO study procedures. If you have any questions about these procedures, please email Thank you for your contribution in helping APOLLO succeed.

APOLLO is sponsored by NIAID, NIDDK, NIMHD

APOLLO Instructions for Organ Procurement Organizations (OPOs)

APOLLO Instructions for HLA Laboratories

ATTACHMENTS (Downloadable documents)