Pig organs could soon be transplanted into humans
Scientists have cleared a major barrier to transplanting organs from pigs into humans after removing threatening viruses from the animals’ Deoxy ribonucleic Acid (DNA)/genetic material.
The new research opens up the possibility of breeding animals to harvest their organs to meet the demand for new tissue.
Some challenges, including major ethical objections still remain, but experts said the breakthrough is a significant step towards pig-to-man transplants, also known as xenotransplantation.
The shortage of organs for transplants is one of the biggest challenges to modern medicine, and the current supply of tissue meets only a tiny amount of the total demand, the authors said. But the ability to breed pigs specifically for that purpose would allow that to be easily addressed, since they have similar organs to ours and can be bred in large numbers.