Scientists revive dead pig hearts and cells

Others unrelated to the work were equally astonished.

Nita Farahani, a law professor at Duke University who studies the ethical, legal and social implications of emerging technologies, said:

Faraney added that the study raises questions about the definition of death.

“We speculate that death is a thing and a state of being,” she said. “Is there a form of death that is reversible?”

The research began several years ago, when the group conducted a similar experiment with the brains of slaughterhouse dead pigs. Four hours after the pig died, the group injected him with a solution called BrainEx, similar to his OrganEx, and confirmed that brain cells that should have died revived.

Another member of the Yale University team, Dr. Zvonimir Vrsella, asked if it could bring them back to life.

The OrganEx solution contains nutrients, anti-inflammatory drugs, drugs that prevent cell death, neuroleptic drugs (substances that suppress neuronal activity and prevent the pig from regaining consciousness), and artificial blood mixed with each animal’s own blood. contained hemoglobin.


When they treated pigs that died, investigators took precautions to ensure that the animals were not suffering. continued throughout the experiment. In addition, the nerve blockers in OrganEx solutions prevent nerve firing, ensuring that the brain is inactive. The researchers also chilled the animals to slow chemical reactions. Individual brain cells were alive, but there was no sign of organized global neural activity within the brain.

I made one surprising discovery. The OrganEx-treated pigs jerked their heads when researchers injected an iodine contrast agent solution for imaging. Latham stressed that the reason for this move is unclear, but there was no indication that the brain was involved.

Yale University has applied for a patent on this technology. The next step, Sestan said, is to see if the organ is functioning properly and can be successfully transplanted. Some time later, researchers hope to test whether the method can repair damaged hearts and brains.

journal Nature Two independent experts were asked to write comments on the study. discussed the possibility of using this system to


In a telephone interview, he explained that OrganEx could be used in the future in situations where patients are not brain dead, but brain damaged to the point where life support is useless.

Porte said most countries have a “no contact” policy of five minutes after ventilators are turned off and before organs are removed by transplant surgeons. [operating room]and a few more minutes pass,” by which time the organ may be damaged and rendered unusable.

Also, some patients do not die immediately when life support stops, but their hearts beat too weakly to keep their organs healthy.

“In most countries, transplant teams wait two hours for a patient to die,” said Porte. He added that if the patient had not yet died, they would not attempt to remove the organ.

As a result, 50% to 60% of patients who died after life support was turned off and whose family wanted to donate organs failed to become donors.

If OrganEx can revive these organs, the number of organs available for transplantation will increase significantly, and the impact will be “huge,” Porte said.

Another comment came from attorney and ethicist Brendan Parent, director of transplant ethics and policy studies at New York University’s Grossman School of Medicine.

In a phone interview, he spoke about the “tricky questions of life and death” posed by OrganEx.

“By the accepted medical and legal definition, these pigs were dead,” the parent said. But “the key question is which features and what features change things,” he added.

If the group didn’t use neuroleptics in the solution and the pig brains worked again, would the pigs still be dead? If it regains consciousness, it raises ethical questions.

However, if a patient has had a severe stroke or drowned, restoring brain function may be the goal.

“To make this technology useful for people, we need to see what’s going on in the brain without neuroleptics,” said Parent.

In his opinion, this method must ultimately be tested on those who might benefit, such as victims of stroke or drowning. It requires a lot of deliberation by scientists.

“How to get there will be the key question,” said the parent. “When does the data we have justify this leap?”

Another issue is the impact of OrganEx on the definition of death.

If OrganEx continues to show that the time it takes for cells to fail to recover after deprivation of blood and oxygen is much longer than previously thought, there will be a shift in the time people are judged dead. must.

“It’s strange, but it’s no different than what we’ve been through in ventilator development,” Parent said. “There are a lot of people who might have been said to have died in other times,” she said.

Scientists revive dead pig hearts and cells

Source link Scientists revive dead pig hearts and cells

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