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2022 ISHLTv Recorded Seminars

ISHLTv_28 - ISHLTv Webinar: Xenotransplantation – Crossing the Final Frontier?

‐ May 25, 2022 12:15pm

Members: Free

Webinar Summary:

The recently performed heart transplantation using a genetically modified pig heart into an adult recipient has catapulted the discussion around xenotransplantation back on the center stage. After decades of research and grown understanding and ability to overcome interspecies differences in animal models, have we now reached the point to justify xenotransplantation into humans?

The session will provide insight into the challenges encountered, the genetic manipulations undertaken to overcome these, surgical concerns and solutions, insight into the clinical course of human xenotransplantation in present and past and discussion around ethical and infectious concerns.

Moderators: Anna Meyer, MD, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany

Simon Urschel, MD, University of Alberta/Stollery Children’s Hospital, Edmonton, AB, Canada

12:00 PM

Welcome and Introductions


12:02 PM

Of Mice and Men: Genetic Engineering to Overcome Interspecies Barriers

Richard Pierson, III, MD, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

This presentation will discuss natural incompatibilities (αGAL and other polysaccharides, complement regulating and antithrombotic factors, immune activation molecules) that have been identified over the decades of xenotransplant and (successful) efforts to address them with novel techniques such as somatic cell nuclear transfer and gene insertion with CRISPR/CAS9.

12:12 PM

Is The Solution the Solution? Organ Preservation and Surgical Aspects of Xenotransplantation.

Paolo Brenner, MD, University of Munich, Munich, Germany

The success of xenotransplantation also depends on surgical considerations for animal selection, graft explantation and preservation, the perfusion solution and strategies. This presentation will address these questions including a potential role of ex-vivo perfusion.

12:22 PM

Perioperative management of a xenotransplant: Do We Have to Think Outside the Species?

Muhammad M Mohiuddin, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA

In this presentation specific considerations around immune suppression and growth inhibition will be addressed and the reasons for divergence from standard protocols for inter-human transplantation explained.

12:32 PM

Are we any smarter after the pandemic? Risk and Prevention of Interspecies Infectious Transmission in Xenotransplantation

Jay Fishman, MD, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA

This presentation will address concerns about transmission of infectious diseases from the donor species to the human recipient, the potential of generation of novel infectious agents due to interspecies exchange and recombination and the strategies to minimize infectious risks in the setting of xenotransplantation.

12:42 PM

Thirty-eight years after Baby Fae: Ethical Consideration Around Xenotransplantation and Associated Gene Manipulation

Richard Chinnock, MD, MHCM, Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, Loma Linda, CA, USA

Ethical considerations around manipulating animals to become better suitable “spare part” providers for humans, emotional aspects of receiving an animal organ and specific aspects of xenotransplantation for children and infants will be discussed by the cardiologist working for 3 decades with the pioneer of infant heart transplant and performer of the thus far only baboon into human transplantation.

12:52 PM

Panel discussion

1:13 PM

Closing Remarks


1:14 PM

ISHLT Announcement

Greg Schultz, CAE, ISHLT CEO

1:15 PM



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