Engineered liver tissue expands after transplant

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Many diseases, including cirrhosis and hepatitis, can lead to liver failure. More than 17,000 Americans suffering from these diseases are now waiting for liver transplants, but significantly fewer livers are available.

To help address that shortage, researchers at MIT, Rockefeller University, and Boston University have developed a new way to engineer liver tissue, by organizing tiny subunits that contain three types of cells embedded into a biodegradable tissue scaffold. In a study of mice with damaged livers, the researchers found that ...

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HRSA announces record-breaking hospital campaign results

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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has released the results of the 2017 Workplace Partnership for Life Hospital Organ Donation Campaign. More than 1,000 hospitals and transplant centers, including 296 small and rural hospitals, earned platinum, gold, silver or bronze recognition for their outstanding efforts to promote donation awareness and donor registration between October 2016 and April 2017. The Campaign which unites hospitals, healthcare associations, organ procurement organizations, and Donate Life America affiliates to work together to increase ...

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Eighteen months after double hand transplant, child is now able to write, and feed and dress himself independently

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The world’s first double hand transplant in a child has been successful under carefully considered circumstances. The study, which is published in The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health journal, presents the first medical report of the surgery and 18 months of follow-up.

The recipient of the transplant was an 8-year-old boy based in the USA, who is now able to write, and feed and dress himself independently following months of occupational therapy and psychological support.

However, during this time ...

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Opioid epidemic leads to more organ donors, transplants across the country

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In a rising tide of tragedy with no end in sight, figures through half of this year point to another record year of opiod-related deaths across the country in 2017.

The number of organ donors who died of overdoses more than doubled across the country from 625 in 2014 to 1,263 in 2016, and is projected to rise to about 1,400 this year, according to federal data. That same data shows that most of that increase came from Appalachian states like ...

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Researchers discover indicator of lung transplant rejection

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Research by scientists at Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center’s Norton Thoracic Institute was published in the July 12, 2017 issue of Science Translational Medicine titled, “Zbtb7a induction in alveolar macrophages is implicated in anti-HLA-mediated lung allograft rejection.”

This research was conducted at the laboratories of Thalachallour Mohanakumar, PhD and Deepak Nayak’s PhD at the Norton Thoracic Institute in Phoenix, Ariz. The labs are dedicated to the understanding of immunologic reactions leading to graft rejection following human lung transplantation.

Lung transplantation, where diseased lungs ...

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Scientists develop first app and method to predict heart events after liver transplant

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The first app and score to determine the one-year risk of a liver transplant patient dying or being hospitalized for a heart attack or other cardiovascular complication has been developed by Northwestern Medicine scientists.

“Knowing the patient’s risk is critical to help prevent the frequent cardiac complications that accompany liver transplant surgery and to determine which patients are likely to survive the transplant,” said Dr. Lisa VanWagner, an assistant professor of medicine and preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of ...

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New study suggests many discarded kidneys could prolong life

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The results of a new study suggest that high discard rates among donated kidneys could be avoided in the future. Researchers say that even kidneys with poor biopsy results may be more efficient in prolonging patients’ lifespans than other treatments.

According to the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network (OPTN), so far this year, 6,099 kidneys have been donated in the United States. Of these, living donors provided 2,223 kidneys, with the remaining 3,876 having been collected from deceased ...

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Could donor organs be frozen to save lives later?

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Long-term preservation of donor organs and tissue for on-demand transplants and medical procedures sounds futuristic — something of the medical ideal.

Need a heart or kidney transplant? Just grab one from the freezer. But, hey, the Arctic wood frog thaws and reanimates each year after being frozen for 240 days, so why can’t the same be done for human hearts, lungs and livers?

Such research, long underway with success in preserving skin tissue and heart valves, largely has remained off the radar, ...

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CNBC reports on new technology to combat organ shortage

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Every year, tens of thousands of Americans receive new organs, giving them a new lease on life when the ones they were born with start to fail. In 2016 there were more than 33,600 transplants, a number that has risen by 20 percent in the past five years.

However, there are many more than that waiting on the transplant list — about 120,000 people total. Sometimes they wait for years; an average of about Continue Reading →

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Twin aids wounded brother in rare living donor intestinal transplant

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CHICAGO — A selfless sacrifice brings identical twin brothers closer than ever.

“My cousin said, ‘Oh, that’s why there are two of y’all — you all can swap parts,’” Patrick Noel recalls.

Those words were more than an innocent joke for Patrick and his identical twin brother, Derrick.

“I’d give it to him again if I had to,” Derrick says.

Last July, Patrick was shot six times in front of his Calumet City home, a case of mistaken identity.

“Everything changed in the blink of an eye,” ...

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