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Cryopreservation by vitrification: a promising approach for transplant organ banking

Finger, Erik B.a; Bischof, John C.b

Current Opinion in Organ Transplantation: June 2018 - Volume 23 - Issue 3 - p 353–360
doi: 10.1097/MOT.0000000000000534
ORGAN PRESERVATION AND PROCUREMENT: Edited by Erik B. Finger
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Purpose of review The objective of this review is to describe the physical and biological barriers to organ cryopreservation, historic approaches for conventional cryopreservation and evolving techniques for ice-free cryopreservation by vitrification.

Recent findings Vitrification is a process whereby a biologic substance is cooled to cryogenic temperatures without the destructive phase transition of liquid to solid ice. Recent advances in cryoprotective solutions, organ perfusion techniques and novel heating technologies have demonstrated the potential for vitrification and rewarming organs on a scale applicable for human transplantation.

Summary Successful strategies for organ cryopreservation could enable organ banking, which would recast the entire process in which organs are recovered, allocated, stored and prepared for transplant.

aDepartment of Surgery

bDepartments of Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Correspondence to Erik B. Finger, MD, PhD, Department of Surgery University of Minnesota 420 Delaware St SE, MMC 195, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA. Tel: +1 612 626 1154; e-mail: efinger@umn.edu

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