Therapeutic strategies for xenograft rejection.
The increasing demand for transplantable organs over the past several decades has stimulated the idea of using animal organs in lieu of cadaveric organs in clinical transplantation. Pigs are now considered to be the most suitable source of organs for transplantation because of their abundant availability, their appropriate size, their relatively short gestation period, and the recent development in the technology to genetically manipulate them. In the past few years, some of the seemingly complex immunologic responses in pig-to-primate transplantation have been elucidated. This progress has allowed us to focus our efforts on devising specific therapeutic strategies to overcome or prevent some of the responses that contribute to rejection of the xenograft. In this article, we review the various approaches that might allow clinical xenotransplantation to come to fruition.
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