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USA: pig kidney transplanted into a living patient for the first time

Surgeons transplanted a kidney from a genetically modified pig into a living patient. For the first time, this represents a new step towards a potential solution to the chronic shortage of donor organs, the American hospital announced this Thursday.

The patient, 62, is “recovering well” from surgery less than a week ago, Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston said in a statement. Kidneys from genetically modified pigs have already been transplanted and used in brain-dead people.

Kidneys from genetically modified pigs have already been transplanted and functioned in brain-dead people. Living patients also previously received heart transplants from a genetically modified pig, but then died. These genetic modifications are done to reduce the risk of rejection.

100,000 people are waiting

Doctors “carefully explained to me the pros and cons of the procedure,” patient Richard Sleiman was quoted as saying in the press release. “I saw this as a way to not only help myself, but also to give hope to thousands of people who need a transplant to survive. »

In the United States, more than 100,000 people are waiting for organ transplants. The kidneys are the most frequently needed organ. The field of xenotransplantation—the transplantation of animal organs into humans—has been developing at tremendous speed in recent years.

The world’s first pig kidney transplant into a brain-dead person was performed in September 2021 by surgeons at New York University Langone Hospital in New York City.

Source: Le Parisien

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