He successfully performed the first kidney transplant from a pig to a living person.

The initial success of the first transplant of a pig kidney into a living person has raised researchers’ hopes of conducting larger clinical trials using pig organs. this essay can Bring “xenotransplants” into the clinic, the use of animal organs in human recipients.

The recipient of the pig kidney was a 62-year-old man who had end-stage kidney failure. According to his surgeon, he is recovering after the surgery on March 16. The kidney was taken from a miniature pig that had received 69 genomic edits, aimed at Prevent rejection of donated organ And reduce the risk that any virus hidden in the organ could infect the recipient.

Case, compiled in magazine Naturedemonstrates that, at least in the short term, these organs are safe and function like the kidneys, celebrates luhan yang, CEO of Kihan Biotech in Hangzhou, China, who is also the founder of Egenesis, a biotech company that produces pigs. In Cambridge, Massachusetts. The company is in talks with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to plan clinical trials for it Pig Kidney and Pediatric Heart and Pig Liver Transplant Program which will connect to the receiver from outside the body, indicates Wenning KinA molecular biologist in eugenesis.

large scale testing

All US transplants of animal organs into living humans received FDA approval as “compassionate use”, given in specific cases when a person’s life is in danger and there is no other treatment. But Yang hopes the new results will motivate the F.D.A. Approve large-scale clinical trials, Xenotransplants “can bring hope and life to patients and their families,” Yang says.

The surgery also brings doctors closer to overcoming the shortage of life-saving human organs through the use of animal organs. In the United States alone, approximately 90,000 people are waiting for a kidney transplant, and more than 3,000 die each year while waiting. “Although organ donation rates have increased tremendously, we still need millions of organs to transplant patients,” he says. wayne hawthorneTransplant surgeon at the University of Sydney in Westmead, Australia.

“This is very good news for the region,” he says. Muhammad MohiuddinA surgeon and researcher at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore who led the first pig heart transplant into a living person. Mohiuddin, who is also president of the International Xenotransplant Association, believes that clinical trials Will generate much-needed hard data on the safety and efficacy of xenotransplants,

Surgeons have previously transplanted gene-edited pig hearts into two living people. And modified kidneys have been transplanted into many people who were declared dead because they had reduced brain function.

dozens of versions

He told that the operation lasted for four hours. tatsuo kawai, one of the transplant surgeons who performed the surgery. On his right side, the patient held a donated human kidney that Kawai had transplanted into him in 2018, but which was beginning to fail. As a result, he resumed regular dialysis, but developed complications that required frequent hospital visits, making him a candidate for xenotransplant.

So the surgeons performed World’s first genetically modified pig kidney transplanted into a human alive At Massachusetts General Hospital.

The kidney came from a pig that Egenesis scientists subjected to CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing to modify 69 of the animal’s genes. Monkeys that received the company’s pig organs with these same genomic edits lived for months or even years. So researchers hope that Xenotransplanted kidneys live as long or even longerEspecially because his team came up with a version keeping in mind humans, not monkeys.

The edits included the deletion of three genes that contribute to the production of three sugars on the surface of pig cells. The human immune system attacks cells containing these three sugars, which it recognizes as a foreign invader. Seven genes were added because they produce human proteins that help prevent organ rejection.

antiviral measures

A further 59 genetic changes were made to the pig genome to inactivate the underlying virus. These changes address the risk of the virus becoming active once in the human body. So far, Yang says, researchers have not seen this happen in transplants from living humans, clinically deceased people, or non-human primates. But some laboratory experiments have shown that These viruses can spread from pig tissue to human cells and mice with weakened immune systems.,

The first genetically modified pig heart to be successfully transplanted into a living person turned out to be contaminated with a cryptic virus that could have contributed to the organ’s eventual failure. There was a major concern for the FDA before approving the operation. Risk that porcine pathogens may infect the recipientKawai explained. Egenesis routinely tests its pigs for pathogens, including porcine cytomegalovirus, which can remain silent in their animal hosts.

Before the procedure, researchers collected and froze blood samples from the patient, his family members, and his surgeons. If you develop an infection, researchers can test these blood samples Determine if they were the source of the pathogen,

Additionally, you will continue to be regularly tested for pathogens and, if you develop symptoms, your family members and caregivers will also be tested.

These precautions are important because a healthy pig is very different from one with a weakened immune system, Yang says. Although no viruses, bacteria or fungi were found in the pigs before transplantation, Can still exist and grow in immunocompromised individualshe says.

The kidneys filter toxins from the body, produce urine and help control blood pressure. Once surgeons restored blood flow to the transplanted pig’s organ, it immediately turned pink and began producing urine, Kawai celebrated, a sign that “the transplant was successful,

Another measure of kidney health is the blood level of a chemical compound called creatinine; High levels indicate that the kidneys are not doing their job of filtering waste well. Kawai commented that before the transplant, the patient’s creatinine level was 10 milligrams per deciliter, but had fallen to 2.4 on the fourth day.

“So far this kidney seems to be working as it should,” details Mohiuddin.

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