3 Dec 2015

Novel method of perfusion gives longer life to donor hearts

Prof Frank Rosenfeldt & Ms Chris Egan
An Alfred-Monash group of surgery researchers have previously showed that donation after circulatory death (DCD) canine hearts can be resuscitated if perfused with warm blood. However, clinical application of this technique is complex and difficult. The group has developed a simplified system of cold crystalloid perfusion and compared it with standard cold storage for DCD heart preservation.

They found that continuous cold crystalloid perfusion in a canine model of DCD facilitates aerobic metabolism and resuscitates the DCD heart, and provides functional and metabolic recovery superior to cold storage. Prof Frank Rosenfeldt said, "We believe that this shows promise for improved clinical preservation of DCD and marginal donor hearts."

Reference: Choong JW, Ou R, Lim YW, Rosenfeldt FL. Cold crystalloid perfusion provides cardiac preservation superior to cold storage for donation after circulatory death. Transplantation. 2015 Nov 13. [Epub ahead of print]

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