A human heart was transplanted into a pig Science


In the United States, the pig’s heart has been transplanted to humans for the first time. The patient is recovering from a historic operation performed Friday at the University of Maryland Hospital in Baltimore.

In the eight-hour operation, the animal’s heart began throbbing in the man’s chest as expected. The patient is already breathing on his own. He is still stuck in a device that supports blood circulation.

“This is indeed a breakthrough and gives hope to patients who can be saved in the future,” says the surgeon. Robert Montgomery USA Today -in leaf.

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The Montgomery group in New York did the groundwork to make the heart transplant possible.

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In the fall, they managed to relocate on a trial basis genetically modified pig kidney for a brain-dead patient.

The experiment showed that when certain porcine genes are modified, the patient’s body does not reject the graft.

The body of a pig is close enough to a human to utilize its organs in a human. Porcine tissues have already been used, for example, to repair valve defects in the human heart.

A heart was taken from a genetically modified and purpose-bred one-year-old pig that is now pounding a 57-year-old American Dave Bennettin chest.

Ten genes were modified from this that would allow the heart to fit into the human body without a rejection reaction. The growth of the pig’s heart was also restricted to suit the human.

The experimental operation was Bennett’s last straw. He was not eligible for the transplant list because of his patient history.

Without the transplant, Bennett would have died. Surgeon Bartley Griffith suggested an exceptional transfer to the patient.

“We can’t transfer a human heart to you, but we can try a pig’s heart. That’s never been done before, ”Griffith says of the patient’s encounter In the New York Times.

Bennett’s new heart is taken from a genetically modified pig bred by Revivicor. One-year-old pigs were bred and genetically engineered for transplantation experiments.

First, three genes were modified from the pig that would normally preclude the suitability of the organ for humans. One of these genes produces a sugar molecule that is rejected by the human body. These genes were turned off.

Six human genes were then tailored to inherit the pig. They, in turn, promote the adaptation of the pig’s heart to humans.

Finally, a growth regulatory gene was quenched. The pig deliberately remained undersized compared to its normal companion. Thanks to the modification, the growth of its heart stopped.

In previous experiments on baboons, it has been the case that the heart of a pig has continued to grow in the breast of a baboon after transplantation, which is not good for quality.

During the operation, the patient was also given a new medicine to suppress the immune system.

“Over the past decade, we’ve progressed from one genetically engineered pig to two, five, eventually ten genes,” says Revivicor’s chief scientific officer. David ayares USA Todayssa.

For kidney transplants, modification of one gene may be sufficient. The company is also planning lung transplants. They can be more complex.


Source: Tiede by www.tiede.fi.

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