Why are the organs of pigs and not of other animals compatible with humans?

This Wednesday we introduced you to the historical case in which a group of surgeons in USA achieved for the first time that a animal organ it will work in a body. Scientists at the New York hospital, NYU Langone Health, conducted the first pig kidney transplant in a person.

The patient, a brain-dead woman with signs of kidney dysfunction, was part of a experiment that will undoubtedly revolutionize medicine. During three days, the kidney “had an absolutely normal function”, so the Dr. Robert Montgomery, who led the surgical team.

Why are pig organs compatible with humans?

Faced with this unusual event, the question arises as to what is the Scientific explanation of what happened in the US? Because the pig organs and not other animals such as primates are compatible with humans? We will explain it to you below.

In April of this year, a group of researchers in Israel developed a hybrid pig and human organ capable of giving hope to the shortage of human organs for donation. The study was led by the Dr. Shahar Cohen, from the Beilinson Hospital, and published in the Scientific Reports magazine.

According to said expert, the main cause of the animal organ rejection is the inner lining of your blood vessels, which is the point of contact between the transplanted organ and the receiver body.

Your team found the solution to the problem replacing the coating of pig blood vessels and with a coating more “friendly” to the human immune system designed from human placenta cells.

“We are looking for a way to produce a alternative coating that does not cause rejection. Instead of destroying the entire organ, we remove the pig’s inner layer of blood vessels and we replaced it with a ‘human layer’, humanizing the blood vessels of the organ and generating a hybrid one, “Cohen told the Israeli newspaper The Jerusalem Post.

Back then, the method of doctor shahar was tested on organs like heart, lungs, liver, kidney, pancreas and extremities in experiments called ‘ex-vivo’, that is, outside the organism. Once having the hybrid organ, is placed in a perfusion machine that preserves it to be transplanted.

Why pigs and not other animals?

According to the doctor’s team Shahar cohen, the availability, reproductive characteristics and physiological similarities of the pigs with humans it makes them a “more favorable organ donor than non-human primates.”

“Our technology provides a significant shortcut in efforts to generate a unlimited supply of transplantable organs which will be available on demand. The future is here and now, “Cohen said in a recent interview with The Jerusalem Post.

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