Increasing utilization of donated organs
Ex Vivo Lung Perfusion (EVLP) – enabling the safe use of rejected lungs
In collaboration with Professor Stig Steen at Lund University, XVIVO has for several years developed a technique and solution for warm perfusion of lungs, with the aim of making more organs available for transplantation.
In normothermic EVLP, donated lungs are circulated with a blood like solution and heated to body temperature. During the process, the lungs are connected to a pump for circulation and to a ventilator to simulate breathing. Normothermic EVLP recreates a non-harmful environment, similar to that in the body (in vivo), which gives the lung and its cells the opportunity to recover. The method also allows for evaluation of the function of the lungs outside the body by observing flows, pressures and gas exchange. In this way, transplant teams are given a method for objective assessment of the lung before the final decision on transplantation is made.
Today, only about 20% of all lungs donated are transplanted. Through the use of EVLP for evaluation of lungs initially assessed as non-transplantable, the utilization rate can be doubled to about 40%.
Oxygenated Machine Perfusion of Kidney and Liver
As for all organs, the lack of oxygen during storage is causing injury to donated kidneys and livers. During the past decade, there has been renewed interest in the use of machine perfusion instead of traditional cold storage on ice to recondition and repair organs. Machine perfusion restores flow of the organ and allows for oxygen and therapeutic agents to be added. In addition to improving organ function, machine perfusion allows for testing of organs that have a questionable or uncertain quality. It also extends the time that an organ can be kept outside the body. Watch this video to learn more about oxygenated versus standard cold perfusion preservation in kidney transplantation.