Prolonged Organ Perfusion
To the Editor:
Organs that are removed, cooled, and then perfused in vivo function for years, but organs that are perfused ex vivo under physiologic conditions lose the endothelial barrier and fail in a few hours. Why? Our research is devoted to answering this question. Our studies to date, including the paper cited (McLeod et al),1 indicate that there is something in cross-circulation of plasma with a normal animal that maintains the endothelial barrier and allows normal organ function for at least 3 days. Our continuing research will identify and isolate those factors.
Our research is not intended to develop a preservation method for clinical heart transplantation. When the mechanism of endothelial injury and repair is identified, the findings will apply to prolonged organ perfusion for transplantation including hearts from DCD donors.
Copyright © 2019 by the ASAIO
1. McLeod JS, Poling C, Church JT, et al. Ex Vivo heart perfusion for 72 hours using plasma cross circulation. ASAIO J 2020; 66:753–759.