Allogeneic Head and Body Reconstruction: Mouse Model
There is still no effective way to save a surviving healthy mind when there is critical organ failure in the body. The next frontier in CTA is allo-head and body reconstruction (AHBR), and just as animal models were key in the development of CTA, they will be crucial in establishing the procedures of AHBR for clinical translation.
Methods and results
Our approach, pioneered in mice, involves retaining the donor brain stem and transplanting the recipient head. Our preliminary data in mice support that this allows for retention of breathing and circulatory function. Critical aspects of the current protocol include avoiding cerebral ischemia through cross-circulation (donor to recipient) and retaining the donor brain stem. Successful clinical translation of AHBR will become a milestone of medical history and potentially could save millions of people.
This experimental study has confirmed a method to avoid cerebral ischemia during the surgery and solved an important part of the problem of how to accomplish long-term survival after transplantation and preservation of the donor brain stem.