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Living donor exchange poses new option for liver transplantation
Date:4/1/2010

Two major transplant centers in Hong Kong and South Korea released results from their paired donor exchange programs for living donor liver transplantation (LDLT). A single paired exchange, performed by the Hong Kong team under emergency circumstances, was a success. The Korean team reported 16 donor exchanges conducted over a 6-year period were successful. Full details of this novel approach to organ transplantation appear in the April issue of Liver Transplantation, a journal published by Wiley-Blackwell on behalf of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD).

Living donor transplantation has emerged as an alternative to the shortage of deceased donor organs, and in some parts of the world represents almost the only alternative for liver transplantation. However, many patients in need find that family members who are willing to donate organs have incompatible blood types. As a result, transplant centers worldwide are establishing coordinated donor exchange programs, where living donors are matched with medically acceptable and blood group compatible recipients in cases where the original intended recipient is not blood group compatible with their donor.

Paired donor exchange programs were adopted at two major transplant centersThe University of Hong Kong, Queen Mary Hospital, and the ASAN Medical Center, Seoul. Performing ABO-incompatible LDLTs, another practice that has emerged in response to the lack of blood-group compatible organs, generally requires a more stringent immunosuppressive regimen to allow the body to accept the organ. While this method has achieved some success, ABO-incompatible LDLT has a 5-year survival rate of only 52%. In addition, the heavier immunosuppressive regimen has uncertain long-term consequences and compromised quality of life.

Donor exchange programs appear to be an ideal solution to the shortage when only blood-group incompatible donors exist for a specific recipie
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Contact: Dawn Peters
medicalnews@wiley.com
781-388-8408
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

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