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One more step to alleviate the donor shortage: pig hearts successfully transplanted into two brain-dead people

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At the moment, researchers believe that xenotransplantation is safer in brain-dead recipients than in living patients.

New York University surgeons have successfully transplanted modified pig hearts genetically engineered two brain-dead patients, moving one step closer to the long-term goal of using pig parts to address the shortage of human organs for transplantation.

According to researchers who carried out the procedure, the organs functioned normally, with no signs of rejection by the body, during the three-day experiments in June and July. “We were able to capture in real time everything that was happening during that 72-hour period,” said Robert Montgomery, the director of the New York University Langone Transplant Institute, at a press conference on Tuesday quoted by Reuters.

Furthermore, the hearts showed no evidence of a pig virus that is believed to have contributed to the death of the 57-year-old man who participated in the first pig heart transplant earlier this year.

At the moment, researchers believe that xenotransplantation is more safer in brain-dead recipients than in living patients and also more informative because biopsies can be done more frequently.

“Our goal is to integrate practices used in transplant typical, everyday heart condition, but with a non-human organ that will function normally without additional help from unproven devices or medications,” explained Nader Moazami, Langone Heart Transplant Surgical Director.

Meanwhile, at the end of June it was reported that the Administration The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is reportedly developing plans to allow clinical trials with porcine organs for transplantation into humans.

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