Media Resource Center

Ethical Considerations in Pig-to-Human Xenotransplantation - March 2024

As part of our ongoing mission to provide our members with interesting multimedia events focusing on xenotransplantation, we are proposing a recent discussion on Ethical Considerations in Pig-to-Human Xenotransplantation presented by the Harvard Medical School Center for Bioethics.

The program features IXA President-Elect Dr. Jay Fishman providing a concise introduction to the challenges facing clinical xenotransplantation focusing on potential infectious diseases and patient monitoring. Next, Dr. Douglas Hanto demonstrates the unique challenge faced in trying to balance the rights of the research subject with the potential risk to society. Dr. Lisa Moses provides valuable insights into the sometimes-overlooked concerns of animal welfare and animal ethics and the need for transparent reporting of responsible research in all phases of development to satisfy a skeptical public.

This program moves beyond the familiar talking points to illuminate a realistic pathway toward clinical xenotransplantation. The 90-minute video and transcript are available on YouTube.

News Articles and Podcasts - September 2023

Dr. Muhammad Mohiuddin

Professor of Surgery, Director,
Program Cardiac Xenotransplantation Program,
University of Maryland School of Medicine

Dr. Megan Sykes

Director, Columbia Center for Translational Immunology,
Columbia University

Professor Peter Cowan

St. Vincent’s Hospital, Immunology Research Center;
Melbourne, Australia

Professor Wayne Hawthorne

Westmead Hospital
University of Sydney, Australia

We present a collection of articles featuring Dr. Muhammad Mohiuddin, Professor of Surgery, Director, Program in Cardiac Xenotransplantation, University of Maryland School of Medicine, who, together with Dr. Bartley Griffin, led the team that recently performed the first xenotransplant of a porcine heart into a human patient at the University of Maryland, in Baltimore, USA. Dr. Mohiuddin is IXA President Elect, and a current member of the IXA Executive Committee.

The link that was provided by the University of Maryland, collects several pieces of media coverage of the first human heart xenotransplantation. Dr. Mohiuddin with his colleagues, share insights on the course of events surrounding this historical first in xenotransplantation, the circumstances and scientific ground that led to be granted permission from the competent authorities as well as the ethical motivation to offer this non-standard treatment to a very sick patient that had no chance to be treated with more conventional therapies. While raising debates, as all novel procedures do, discussions in the scientific community and in public have continued. The path to greater success can come from learning at each little step along the way. Dr. Mohiuddin has provided a veritable treasure trove to keep the discussions on xenotransplantation moving forward.

A second collection of interviews, include among others, a joint interview of Dr. Mohiuddin and Dr. Meghan Sykes, Director, Columbia Center for Translational Immunology, Columbia University, USA, Past IXA President and Vice-President of The Transplantation Society, offering more insights on the potential of xenotransplantation as a solution to the human organ shortage.

For all IXA members that may have not viewed it yet, please, find the link to the Webinar presented on April 20, 2023 by IXA President Professor Wayne Hawthorne, Department of Surgery, Westmead Hospital, University of Sydney, Australia. The Moderators for this session were past IXA President, Professor Peter Cowan, St. Vincent’s Hospital, Immunology Research Center, Melbourne, Australia along with Professor Vincent Lee, Renal Physician and head of Nephrology at Westmead Hospital, Sydney University, Australia. The presentation entitled: XENOTRANSPLANTATION: A NOVEL CONCEPT OR HUMANITY’S REALITY FOR CURING THE ORGAN DONOR SHORTAGE? is part of the Education Nuances in Nephrology initiative organized by the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) in collaboration with TTS.

News Articles and Podcasts will be added here as they become available.

All links provided are intended for educational purposes and to serve as a base for further discussions.

We welcome your questions, comments and follow-ups by contacting Suzanne Landis, IXA Sections Manager at at TTS.

European Parliamentary Research Service Podcast

Professor Wayne Hawthorne

Westmead Hospital
University of Sydney, Australia



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