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Text Version    RSS    Subscribe    Unsubscribe    Archive    Media Kit December 29, 2014

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As 2014 comes to a close, ASTS would like to wish its members, partners and other industry professionals a safe and happy holiday season. As we reflect on the past year for the industry, we would like to provide the readers of ASTS Newsbrief a look at the most accessed articles from the year. Our regular publication will resume Jan. 12.


A novel organ donor facility: A decade of experience with liver donors
American Journal of Transplantation (login required)
From March 10: Transplant surgeons have historically traveled to donor hospitals, performing complex, time-sensitive procedures with unfamiliar personnel. This often involves air travel, significant delays and frequently occurs overnight. In 2001, the nation's first organ recovery center was established. The goal was to increase efficiency, reduce costs and reduce surgeon travel. Liver donors and recipients, donor costs, surgeon hours and travel time, from April 1, 2001 through Dec. 31, 2011 were analyzed.
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Super-cooled livers could bring new flexibility to organ transplants
Los Angeles Times
From July 28: In liver transplantation, the biggest inequity is geographic. When organs become available, they are generally offered first to patients nearby. A big part of the reason is that once a liver is harvested from a cadaver, it remains viable for no more than 12 hours. As a result, waiting times vary dramatically across the country, depending on supply and demand. Now a group of Harvard University researchers has come up with a preservation technique that could one day allow livers to be shared more easily around the world.
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The new OPTN kidney allocation policy: Potential for inequitable access among highly sensitized patients
American Journal of Transplantation
From Dec. 1: In 2013, the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network approved a new national kidney allocation scheme (KAS) for deceased donor (DD) transplantation. Among the many attributes of the new policy was the decision to proactively address organ allocation to highly sensitized patients, long recognized to be the most disadvantaged group on the waiting list. Beginning on Dec. 4, 2014, the new KAS will be implemented and candidates with calculated panel reactive antibody (cPRA) values of 98 percent, 99 percent and 100 percent will have the highest priority for local, regional and national sharing, respectively. This approach is projected to improve the access of patients in this group to compatible organs.
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Frailty tied to lower survival rates after kidney transplant
HealthDay via U.S. News & World Report
From Nov. 3: Physical frailty may lead to worse five-year survival rates among kidney transplant patients, regardless of their age, a new study shows. The findings suggest that patients should be screened for frailty before kidney transplantation, and that those identified as frail need to be closely monitored after their transplant, the study authors said. The researchers assessed frailty in 537 patients around the time of their kidney transplant. Five years later, survival rates were 91.5 percent for non-frail patients, 86 percent for intermediately frail patients, and 77.5 percent for frail patients, according to the study published online Oct. 30 in the American Journal of Transplantation.
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Why a woman's heart won't work in a man's body
Everyday Health
From Jan. 13: Men who get undersized female hearts are more likely to die within a year of having a heart transplant, according to data gathered by the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS). In a first-of-its-kind study, physicians at the University of Maryland's School of Medicine analyzed 31,634 donor-recipient heart transplant pairs using the UNOS transplant registry.
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Quantifying the risk of incompatible kidney transplantation: A multicenter study
American Journal of Transplantation (login required)
From June 16: Incompatible live donor kidney transplantation (ILDKT) offers a survival advantage over dialysis to patients with anti-HLA donor-specific antibody (DSA). Program-specific reports (PSRs) fail to account for ILDKT, placing this practice at regulatory risk. Researchers collected DSA data, categorized as positive Luminex, negative flow crossmatch (PLNF), positive flow, negative cytotoxic crossmatch (PFNC) or positive cytotoxic crossmatch (PCC), from 22 centers.
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Some receive unnecessary prioritization for liver transplantation, study says
Medical Xpress
From Feb. 10: Patients waiting for liver transplants who develop hepatopulmonary syndrome (HPS), a lung disorder associated with end-stage liver disease, are eligible to move up on the wait list. In a new paper published in Gastroenterology, however, Penn Medicine researchers argue the so-called "exception points" given to these patients award some HPS patients unnecessary priority over others on the list, which includes about 17,000 patients.
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Hepatitis C virus infection and kidney transplantation in 2014: What's new?
American Journal of Transplantation (login required)
From Aug. 25: Chronic hepatitis C virus infection remains an important health problem, which is associated with deleterious consequences in kidney transplant recipients. Besides hepatic complications, several extrahepatic complications contribute to reduced patient and allograft survival in HCV-infected kidney recipients. However, HCV infection should not be considered as a contraindication for kidney transplantation because patient survival is better with transplantation than on dialysis. Treatment of HCV infection is currently interferon-alpha (IFN-α) based, which has been associated with higher renal allograft rejection rates. Therefore, antiviral treatment before transplantation is preferable.
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Icy' technique improves robotic kidney transplants
redOrbit
From Jan. 27: A collaboration of surgeons at Henry Ford Hospital and Medanta Hospital in India successfully transplanted kidneys into 50 recipients using an innovative robot-assisted procedure in which the organ is cooled with sterile ice during the operation. The research project – published online ahead of print in European Urology, the journal of the European Association of Urology – advances minimally invasive robotic surgery as a safe alternative to traditional open surgery.
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Gene test may spot which kidney transplants more likely to fail
HealthDay
From Nov. 17: A preliminary gene test may help identify kidney transplant patients at risk of organ rejection, researchers report. Organ rejection occurs in 15 percent to 20 percent of kidney transplant patients, even when they are given drugs to suppress their immune system. Typically, an increase in serum creatinine — a sign of kidney function — warns of impending kidney rejection. A kidney biopsy is then performed to confirm whether a new kidney is being rejected by the body, according to background information in the study.
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ASTS NewsBrief
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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