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J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 1991 Aug;102(2):224-34.

Two-day preservation of major organs with autoperfusion multiorgan preparation and hibernation induction trigger. A preliminary report.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, University of Kentucky Medical Center, Lexington 40536.


A new autoperfusion multiorgan preparation was studied in which the heart and lungs were removed with the liver, pancreas, duodenum, and both kidneys en bloc while being perfused by the heart and oxygenated by the lungs. A respirator with 50% oxygen was used for ventilation. Fresh blood, glucose, electrolytes, mannitol, and antibiotics were given through the portal vein. Fifteen mongrel dogs were used. In the study group (seven dogs), 10 ml of plasma containing hibernation induction trigger, obtained from deeply hibernating woodchucks, was given intravenously 2 hours before the operation, and 4 ml was given every 4 hours during the preservation period. In the control group (eight dogs), no hibernation induction trigger was used. Survival time in the study group ranged from 33 to 56 hours (mean 43.4 +/- 4.1 hours), longer than that of the control group, which was 9 to 31 hours (mean 16.2 +/- 2.6 hours, p less than 0.001). In the study group aortic systolic pressure ranged from 64 +/- 5 to 92 +/- 7 mm Hg, arterial oxygen tension from 180 +/- 35 to 285 +/- 66 mm Hg. Urine output ranged from 15 to 70 ml/hour. Blood urea nitrogen declined from 15.6 +/- 2.5 to 6.6 +/- 1.3 mg/dl (p less than 0.01); creatinine declined from 0.8 +/- 0.03 to 0.3 +/- 0.01 mg/dl (p less than 0.01). Severe liver congestion and premature renal failure occurred in the control group but did not occur in the study group. In the study group one lung was transplanted after 33 hours of preservation with simultaneous contralateral pulmonary artery ligation. Good lung function was maintained after transplantation. Although the exact mechanism by which hibernation induction trigger extends tissue survival time is still not clear, its effect on organ preservation is profound. This study also produced one of the longest average survival times for organ preservation.

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