It was a risk for all involved, but an experimental procedure by surgeons at the University of Maryland to transplant the heart of a genetically modified pig into a person is so far a success.
David Bennett, a Maryland father and handyman, was diagnosed with severe heart disease that prevented him from being eligible for a transplant. When the medical team asked Bennett to be their patient, he accepted.
“This was his best hope of getting out of the hospital and having somewhat of a normal quality of life,” David’s son, David Bennett Jr., said.
Humans have had limited success with transplanting organs from animals into their bodies before. Surgeons claim that gene editing was performed on the pig to remove any cells that could make it rejectable by the human body.
“This pig heart has performed so far very well,” surgeon Dr. Muhammad Mohiuddin said. “Even beyond our expectations.”
This patient is undoubtedly giving hope for those who will need organs later in life, no matter what happens.