US surgeon Dr. Robert Montgomery said that they have successfully transferred a pig’s kidney to a person. The researcher also hopes that it could ultimately solve donor organ shortages.
The work is not yet peer-reviewed or has not been published in any journal. But the lead investigator Dr. Robert Montgomery explain how the kidney transplant happened. Dr. Robert said, “We observed a kidney that basically functioned like a human kidney transplant, that appeared to be compatible in as much as it did all the things that a normal human kidney would do. It functioned normally, and did not appear to be undergoing rejection.”
Previously scientists use pig heart valves that are widely used in humans. Pig organs are a good match for the human body. So, dr. Robert said, “The traditional paradigm that someone has to die for someone else to live is never going to keep up.” The investigator also added, “I certainly understand the concern and what I would say is that currently about 40% of patients who are waiting for a transplant die before they receive one. We use pigs as a source of food, we use pigs for medicinal uses – for valves, for medication. I think it’s not that different.”
A kidney and intensive care doctor Dr. Maryam Khosravi said about this transplant, “Animal to human transplantation has been something that we have studied for decades now, and it’s really interesting to see this group take that step forward.” She also added, “Just because we can doesn’t mean we should. I think the community at large needs to answer these questions.”