A new transplant technology saves hearts so doctors can save lives

Sixty million people globally suffer from life-threatening heart failure. Many will never be given the opportunity of a heart transplant – and their lives are cut short.

XVIVO is determined to change the game. By making more well-functioning donor hearts available, more lives will be saved.

For XVIVO, the way to succeed is by addressing the overarching problem: an alarming lack of suitable hearts for donation.

It’s not an easy task. First of all, only a fraction of all deaths occurs in a way that allows organs to be donated. In addition, only 30 per cent of donated hearts are used.

In some cases, this is because of the heart’s poor quality. However, limited time is a factor too. A donated heart must beat inside its recipient within 4–6 hours. Therefore, hearts with questionable qualities and hearts that won’t reach suitable recipients on time and in perfect condition are discarded.

All of this means that far too many people die waiting for a new heart. The XVIVO Heart Preservation Device, a technology built on an innovation by Professor Stig Steen, handles this dilemma. The device works as a miniature heart-lung machine and perfuses the donated heart with a solution that brings oxygen and nutrients to the heart during transport.

In Professor Stig Steen’s pre-clinical research, this new method has demonstrated an ability to preserve the heart in a better condition and allow for a longer storage time outside the body. If hearts can be better preserved for a longer time, more hearts will be available for transplant and improve outcomes for the transplanted patients.

By increasing the availability of donor hearts, XVIVO works to fulfil a bold vision: nobody should die waiting for a new organ.

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