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Kidney Drug Plan Divides Transplant And Dialysis Supporters

The New York Times: "A Congressional proposal to help pay for drugs needed by transplant recipients to prevent rejection of donated kidneys has run into opposition from dialysis providers, drug companies and the National Kidney Foundation." The groups support extending Medicare drug coverage but say the measure would cut funding for dialysis. "The proposal has created a rift between those in the business of providing dialysis and those in the business of performing transplants. The discord is being felt on Capitol Hill, and supporters of the measure fear it may make it easy for Congress to kill the provision altogether in the late stages of negotiation.

Total Artificial Heart Patient Who Received Dual Transplant Celebrates 1st Christmas At Home With 2-Year-Old Son FiancĂ e

Last December, there were only two things 46-year-old Chuck Besen wanted for Christmas... a matching donor heart and kidney. This year, thanks to the SynCardia temporary CardioWest™ Total Artificial Heart and the dual transplant he received at University Medical Center (UMC) in March, Besen will celebrate his first Christmas at home with his 2-year-old son Dylan and his fiancĂ e Jennifer Hokanson. "Today, I just thank God I'm alive, " said Besen. "The Total Artificial Heart not only saved my life, but allowed me to get strong enough to undergo my dual transplant." "It's incredible how our whole life has changed, " said Hokanson. "This whole journey has been an integral part of Dylan's life.

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Enzyme Necessary For Development Of Healthy Immune System

Mice without the deoxycytidine kinase (dCK) enzyme have defects in their adaptive immune system, producing very low levels of both T and B lymphocytes, the major players involved in immune response, according to a study by researchers with UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. The finding could have ramifications in treating auto-immune disorders, in which the body attacks itself, and possibly certain cancers of the immune system. A drug could be developed to create lower levels of dCK in the body, thereby tamping down immune response. Such a drug might also be effective in transplant patients to decrease risk for rejection, said Dr.

Growth Of Functional Vasculature Promoted By Bioengineered Materials, New Study Shows

Regenerative medicine therapies often require the growth of functional, stable blood vessels at the site of an injury. Using synthetic polymers called hydrogels, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have been able to induce significant vasculature growth in areas of damaged tissue. "This study shows that bio-artificial materials are suitable for promoting vasculature growth and remodeling, " said lead author on the study AndrĂ s GarcĂ a, professor and Woodruff Faculty Fellow in Georgia Tech's Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering and the Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience. "Because hydrogels are very compatible with biological tissues, they are a promising therapeutic delivery vehicle to improve treatment of peripheral artery disease, ischemic heart disease, and survival of cell and tissue transplants.

Heart Transplant Patients Appear To Have Elevated Risk For Multiple Skin Cancers

Many heart transplant patients develop multiple skin cancers, with increased risk for some skin cancers among patients with other cancers and with increasing age, according to a report in the December issue of Archives of Dermatology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. "Solid organ transplant recipients are at increased risk for skin cancers, " the authors write as background information in the article. "Incidence, tumor burden and risk factors for skin cancer are well documented in renal transplant recipients. However, these characteristics are documented to a lesser extent in heart transplant patients, who are at least twice as likely to have skin cancer compared with renal transplant recipients.

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Transplant Guide Highlights Daily Infection Risks From Factors Like Pets And Food

Keeping pets healthy can reduce infection risks for people who have received solid organ transplants and veterinarians should be seen as an integral part of the healthcare team. That's just one of the key pieces of advice from a safe living article published in an infectious diseases supplement in the American Journal of Transplantation. The supplement the second issue of guidelines authored by members of the American Society of Transplantation's Infectious Diseases Community of Practice provides advice on the infection-related challenges facing clinicians caring for people who have received solid organ transplants. These include respiratory viral infections a vital issue during the current pandemic guidance on vaccinations and advice on how to handle patients with conditions such as HIV, herpes, Candida and viral hepatitis.

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