Abstract Background Nerve growth factor (NGF) belongs to the family of neurotropic proteins NGF is markedly expressed in proteinuric renal diseases and in end-stage renal disease; it might be involved in kidney physiopathology. To date, little is known about NGF concentrations in kidney transplant recipients (KTRs). Because NGF exerts its action on cell survival and differentiation, tissue repair, and inflammatory responses, it may also be implicated in the pathogenesis of chronic allograft nephropathy. The aim of this study was to determine circulating NGF concentrations in KTRs and to ascertain their use as a prognostic marker for kidney transplant outcomes. Methods Using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, we performed quantification of NGF in the serum of 40 prevalent KTRs at baseline and at 6 months. Results NGF concentrations in KTRs averaged 1.16 ± 0.67 ng/mL. They negative-linearly correlated with recipient age. Logistic multivariate regression analysis showed NGF to be independently associated with increased proteinuria over the 6-month follow-up. Conclusions Our data demonstrated that serum concentrations of NGF in KTRs were elevated and that they could be considered to be a prognostic marker in kidney transplantation.