Aug 15, 2022          Simply Myself

Cambridge researchers change donor kidney blood type

Researchers at the Cambridge University  have successfully altered the blood type on three deceased donor kidneys in a ground-breaking discovery.

Researchers have been able to alter the blood type of deceased donor kidneys using “molecular scissors” in Transplant.

The discovery offers hope to ethnic minority patients who struggle to find suitable transplants.

A kidney from someone with an A blood type cannot be transplanted to someone with a B blood type, nor the other way around.

But changing the blood type to the universal O will allow more transplants to take place as O can be used for people with any blood group.

“Our confidence was really boosted after we applied the enzyme to a piece of human kidney tissue and saw very quickly that the antigens were removed," said MacMillan, a PhD student at the University.

“It’s very exciting to think about how this could potentially impact so many lives.”

The Cambridge team now needs to see how the newly changed kidneys react to a patient’s usual blood type in their normal blood supply.

MacMillan and Nicholson’s research is set to be published in the British Journal of Surgery in the coming months.