Machine keeps liver alive outside the body for longer

Swiss researchers have developed a new machine that can maintain human livers for longer with the aim of allowing more patients to get transplants.

The machine was developed using pig livers and replicates the conditions in the body, including maintaining a similar pressure as within humans.

An article in New Scientist describes the research by EARA member the University of Zurich, in collaboration with other Zurich institutions (University Hospital, ETH and Wyss).

This new machine has been successful in keeping a human liver alive for seven days, with the added benefit of a noted decline in compounds linked to inflammation and injury. Livers have a short lifespan outside the body, with standard protocols keeping donor organs healthy for around 12 hours.

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