First pig kidney transplant recipient dies two months after surgery

Richard Slayman, who was the first recipient of a kidney transplant from a genetically engineered pig, passed away at the age of 62. The transplant was performed on Richard in March of this year.

“The unexpected death of Mr. Rick Slayman has left the Mass General transplant team extremely devastated. There’s no evidence to suggest that his recent transplant caused it. For many transplant patients around the world, Mr. Slayman will always be seen as a ray of hope, and we are incredibly appreciative of his confidence and commitment to progress the area of xenotransplantation.

The hospital released a statement saying, “We extend our sincere condolences to Mr. Slayman’s family and loved ones as they remember an extraordinary person whose generosity and kindness touched all who knew him.” According to the hospital, there was no proof that the transplant caused his death, as reported by the BBC.Richard had kidney illness that was nearing its conclusion. He received a human kidney transplant in 2018, although it didn’t work out and failed after five years. On March 16, he had a pig kidney transplant, and following the procedure, his replacement organ was functioning well and he no longer needed dialysis.

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Transplanting live cells, tissues, or organs from one species to another—usually from animals to humans—is known as xenotransplantation. It was the first to treat organ shortages and has potential to treat serious illnesses including organ failure. Nonetheless, obstacles consist of immunological rejection and the potential for animal-to-human transmission of infectious illnesses.

These obstacles are being addressed by developments in immunosuppressive, genetic engineering, and organ preservation methods.

“Rick stated after his transplant that he went through the process in part to give hope to the thousands of people who depend on organ transplants in order to survive. Rick reached his objective, and his optimism and hope will last a lifetime. His family has stated that “his legacy will be one that inspires patients, researchers, and health care professionals everywhere.”


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