Bridging Hope with the First Pig-to-Human Kidney Transplant

In a momentous leap forward, surgeons and scientists have achieved a remarkable feat: the world’s first pig-to-human kidney transplant. This groundbreaking procedure not only marks a monumental breakthrough in medical science but also ignites a spark of hope for countless individuals grappling with the challenges of dialysis or languishing on organ transplant waiting lists.

At the heart of this medical milestone lies Richard Slayman, a 62-year-old man battling end-stage renal disease. His journey embodies resilience and determination as he became the pioneering recipient of a new kidney sourced from a genetically modified pig. The meticulous four-hour surgery, conducted on March 16 at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, stands as a beacon of promise for patients in need of life-saving interventions.


Hailing from Weymouth, Massachusetts, Slayman’s spirit remains unwavering as he navigates the path to recovery, with hopes of soon returning home to his loved ones.

For Slayman, this isn’t his first encounter with the complexities of kidney transplantation. In 2018, he underwent a human kidney transplant at the same hospital after enduring seven years of dialysis. Despite the initial relief, the organ eventually faltered after five years, leading him back to the confines of dialysis treatments.


The kidney that now beats within him was generously provided by eGenesis, a visionary company headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This particular pig donor had undergone a transformative genetic makeover, shedding genes that could pose risks to a human recipient while integrating select human genes to enhance compatibility. Moreover, eGenesis took proactive measures to deactivate specific pig viruses that might otherwise pose a threat to human health.


Mike Curtis, the dedicated CEO of eGenesis, exudes confidence in the success of the procedure, buoyed by years of meticulous research and testing on primates. Their tireless efforts are bolstered by the innovative use of experimental drugs, including an antibody known as tegoprubart, developed by Eledon Pharmaceuticals. These medications serve as a shield, guarding against rejection of the pig organ by Slayman’s immune system.


Beyond the confines of the operating theater, this historic surgery marks a monumental stride forward in the field of xenotransplantation – bridging the gap between different species to save human lives.


As we celebrate this triumph of science and compassion, let us also remember the profound impact it holds for those awaiting organ transplants. With over 100,000 individuals in the U.S. alone awaiting the gift of life through organ donation, particularly kidneys, this breakthrough offers a glimmer of hope amidst the darkness of uncertainty. Through collective efforts and unwavering determination, we stand poised to transform the landscape of healthcare and usher in a future where every life holds the promise of renewed hope and vitality.

Like it? Share with your friends!

PH Trending