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Organ transplantation began at the University of Chicago Medicine when a doctor performed the first animal heart transplant nearly a century ago, which eventually earned him a Nobel Prize. Our history of transplant breakthroughs also includes:
We frequently participate in important clinical trials of new treatments. Through our clinical trials, our doctors continue to develop new techniques to make treatments even safer and more effective in children.
Some of the research projects currently under way include:
We remain at the forefront of developing immunosuppressive therapies. We are studying ways to create organ tolerance through strategies such as implanting additional sources of donor cells (such as bone fragments) that help to stabilize a recipient's immune system.
We use new techniques for matching donor kidneys with recipients, including the use of a highly sensitive fluorescence activated cell sorter. This machine uses advanced technology to help ensure a good match between a donor and recipient. Very few centers provide this level of matching.
Our doctors have been working with other groups around the country to develop a device that will preserve organs for transplant without the need to ice them. This may help extend the precious hours before a transplant and minimize damage to the organ.