Machine preservation of donor kidneys in transplantation
With increasing demands for ‘less than ideal’ kidneys for transplantation, machine perfusion of kidneys has been utilized to improve the preservation of kidneys during storage. Hypothermic machine perfusion (HMP) of renal allografts has been shown to reduce delayed graft function rates in both expanded criteria and donation after cardiac death renal allografts. However, the beneficial impact upon long-term graft function is unclear. There has been emerging evidence that both subnormothermic (room temperature) and normothermic machine perfusion (NMP) of allografts have beneficial effects with regards to early graft function, survival and injury in pre-clinical and early clinical studies. Additionally, machine perfusion allows functional assessment of the organ prior to transplantation. Ultimately, the greatest benefit of machine perfusion may be the ability to treat the organ with agents to protect the graft against ischemia reperfusion injury, while awaiting transplantation.