With DNA editing, Brazilians are making headway in transplanting pig organs to humans – 03/31/2021 – Science
KSU | The Sentinel Newspaper
March 31, 2021
Using DNA editing techniques, Brazilian researchers have taken important steps to enable the transplantation of pig organs to humans.
They were able to remove bits of genetic material that could cause rejection or disease in patients given tissue from pigs. The first goal is to conduct kidney transplants, which could significantly reduce the transplant queue and patient reliance on constant hemodialysis sessions.
The work is coordinated by geneticist Mayana Zatz and doctor Silvano Raia from USP. “We were very successful on the molecular side,” says Zatz.
“In this way modified pig kidney transplants for baboons [que são primatas, como o ser humano] have already shown that long-term survival is possible. The monkeys had kidneys for two and a half years and were euthanized as part of the study, regardless of the transplant. The procedure has not yet been done on human patients around the world, but there are teams working for it and it’s an effort that needs to be done in Brazil too, ”she argues...