Closer preservation of organs thanks to advances in cryopreservation

Saffron Bryant

cryoprotectant illustration

The development of cryopreservation technology has enabled rapid advances in reproductive technologies, stem cell therapies, and even saving species from extinction.

However, as part of the cryopreservation process, agents are added to protect the cells from damage and dehydration during the freezing process. Physical Organization.

The two main agents used in cryopreservation in recent decades are dimethylsulfoxide and glycerol, both of which are toxic.

These agents are also unsuitable for hundreds of cells and so far preservation of organs and tissues has not been reached. For this reason, up to 60% of donated hearts and lungs are discarded.

“We have a lot of organs, but most of them just get thrown away,” says Saffron Bryant of RMIT, principal investigator of a new study. “We only have hours to get an organ from a donor to a recipient.”

A research team analyzed the effectiveness of eutectic solvents as cryoprotectants. They compared it to six different solvents in mammalian cells and tested thermal properties, toxicity and permeability in four types of mammalian cells, including skin and brain.

The researchers identified that a proline-glycerol based eutectic solvent was the most effective cryoprotective agent. effective for mammalian cells.

This solvent was also less toxic than when its components were used individually, highlighting the potential for optimizing cryopreservation using combined agents.

These cryoprotectants can even be tailored to specific cell types, with potentially thousands of combinations to be developed.

The team also managed extend incubation time of cells with this new cryopreservation agent, according to the results of the study, published no Journal of Materials Chemistry B.

“Incubating these cells with the cryoprotectant at 37°C for several hours before freezing them and keeping them viable is a critical step in organ and tissue storage,” says Bryant.

“This means we can expose organs to cryoprotectants long enough for them to penetrate the deeper layers of the organ without causing harm,” he says.

with about 1,850 people on the waiting list for organ transplants in Australia and more than 100,000 awaiting transplants in the United States, these new cryoprotective agents can help maintain the viability of donated organs for years instead of hours.

“We have a long way to go in our research because we only looked at single cells and it’s a much more complicated process for organs,” Bryant adds.

“But if we can create this approach to organ storage, we can eliminate their shortage – without any waiting list“, he concludes.

Zap //

Leave a Comment