USA: Successfully transplanted pig kidney for brain dead people

The surgery comes after doctors at the University of Maryland School of Medicine successfully performed the first pig heart transplant on a patient who was not eligible for a human heart transplant in early January.

“Organ shortages are an unsolvable crisis and we don’t have a real solution to this,” said Dr Jayme Locke at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, who led the new study. .

Locke’s team said that both kidneys were working properly and showed no signs of being rejected for more than three days before discontinuing the patient’s life support device.

While one of the kidneys was damaged during separation from the pig, the other kidney produced urine as normal. There was no virus transmission from the pig to the patient during transplantation, and no porcine cells were detected in the patient’s blood.

Dr. Locke noted that the surgery showed that the body of a brain-dead person could still serve as a test for new medical treatments.

Previously, the transplantation of organs from animals to humans has been researched for decades by scientists but has not been successful because the human immune system immediately blocks foreign tissues when the organ is introduced. organs in.

But now, scientists have used technologies that allow gene editing of pigs to make organ transplants from animals to humans possible.

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