UNOS Chief Medical Officer David Klassen, M.D. wrote about the many advancements in organ donation and transplantation in an op-ed published in MedPage Today. In the article, Klassen explains a recent game-changing experiment conducted at NYU Langone Health in which a pig kidney was attached to a brain-dead patient with the permission of their generous family. The kidney successfully functioned for 54 hours. While this is a watershed moment, xenotransplantation will require years of additional research. With that in mind, Klassen outlines some of the innovations taking place in transplant today that will have a direct impact on the patients currently on the national organ waitlist, including predictive analytics, offer filters, and more.
“…The nation’s multifaceted transplant system is quickly moving forward with numerous technological and scientific advancements that—while less sensational than a pig organ functioning in a human body—are increasing transplant rates in the near term,” Klassen wrote in the op-ed. “And the transplant system’s efforts to maximize placement of organs and increase supply are accelerating in real time.”