San Francisco, CA, April 26, 2007 Preservation of an organ intended for transplant during transport from donor to recipient is of primary concern in ensuring a successful transplant. Research presented at the ISHLT 27th Annual Meeting and Scientific Sessions today explores two diverging systems for pump preservation the Organ Care System (OCS) and the cold preservation method, and how they each effect survival for heart transplant patients.
The cold preservation method, which has been in practice for more than 25 years, delivers the organ in a non-functioning state immersed in a cold solution for preservation during transport. The time during transport in this method is referred to as cold ischemic time (CIT), more specifically the interval beginning when an organ is removed from the donor and is cooled with the solution, to the time when the organ is implanted.
Conversely, the Organ Care System (OCS) is based on warm blood perfusion technology, which it uses to maintain organs in a warm, functioning state. This state mimics the environment of the human body during transport from organ donor to recipient. Nutrient rich, oxygenated blood is continuously pumped through the heart in order to maintain the organ in a living, beating, state. Preserving an organ with this method reduces CIT and allows for evaluation of organ function during transport.
New data presented during a late afternoon session on Wednesday, Concurrent Session 2 Cardiac Ischemic Time: Warm, Cold, or Pump?, highlighted the benefits of reducing or eliminating CIT, such as increased availability of donor organs, improved transplant outcomes, and reduced costs associated with end stage organ failure. Presentations during the session outlined research results demonstrating that reducing CIT will increase survivorship, and further how the OCS may eliminate CIT almost entirely.
Gero Tenderich, M.D., Clinic for Thoracic and Cardiovascular Medicine, Bad Oey
Contact: Lauren Mason
International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation