Prolonged heart xenograft survival using combined total lymphoid irradiation and cyclosporine.
Total lymphoid irradiation and cyclosporine have profound immunosuppressive properties and permit successful heart allotransplantation. Cyclosporine used alone has not permitted consistently successful transplantation between species in all cases. Total lymphoid irradiation has not been applied to xenotransplantation. The efficacy of total lymphoid irradiation alone and in combination with cyclosporine was examined using an animal model of heart xenotransplantation. Heterotopic heart transplants were performed using inbred Syrian hamsters as donors and Lewis rats as recipients. Total lymphoid irradiation was administered preoperatively over 3 weeks for a total dose of 15 gray. Cyclosporine was started on the day of surgery and was given as a daily intramuscular injection of 2.5, 5, or 10 mg/kg/day until rejection was complete. Neither total lymphoid irradiation nor cyclosporine alone markedly prolonged graft survival. However, combined total lymphoid irradiation and cyclosporine, 5 or 10 mg/kg/day, dramatically prolonged graft survival to greater than 100 days in most recipients. There were no treatment-related deaths. In conclusion, combined total lymphoid irradiation and cyclosporine permit successful long-term survival of heart xenotransplants in this hamster-to-rat model.
Knechtle, SJ; Halperin, EC; Saad, T; Bollinger, RR
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