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Weymouth man who had experimental pig kidney transplant has died
Weymouth man who had experimental pig kidney transplant has died
Weymouth man who had experimental pig kidney transplant has died

Published on: 05/13/2024

Description

BOSTON — A Weymouth man who had world’s first successful transplant of a genetically-edited pig kidney has died.

Richard Slayman, of Weymouth, had the surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital less than two months ago. When the 62-year-old left Mass General he said he had “one of the cleanest bills of health I’ve had in a long time.”

In a statement, Massachusetts General Hospital said it has no indication Slayman's death was the result of his transplant.

"The Mass General transplant team is deeply saddened at the sudden passing of Mr. Rick Slayman," the MGH statement reads. "Mr. Slayman will forever be seen as a beacon of hope to countless transplant patients worldwide and we are deeply grateful for his trust and willingness to advance the field of xenotransplantation. We offer our heartfelt condolences to Mr. Slayman’s family and loved ones as they remember an extraordinary person whose generosity and kindness touched all who knew him."

Slayman's family said they are sad, but noted that they take great comfort in knowing he inspired so many.

"Millions of people worldwide have come to know Rick's story. We felt – and still feel – comforted by the optimism he provided patients desperately waiting for a transplant. To us, Rick was a kind-hearted man with a quick-witted sense of humor who was fiercely dedicated to his family, friends, and co-workers," reads the family's statement. "We are extremely grateful to his care team across Massachusetts General Hospital and Mass General Brigham … who truly did everything they could to help give Rick a second chance. Their enormous efforts leading the xenotransplant gave our family seven more weeks with Rick, and our memories made during that time will remain in our minds and hearts."

Slayman, who had been living with Type 2 diabetes and hypertension for many years, had end-stage kidney disease at the time of the pig kidney transplant. He previously received a kidney transplant from a deceased human donor.

"After his transplant, Rick said that one of the reasons he underwent this procedure was to provide hope for the thousands of people who need a transplant to survive. Rick accomplished that goal and his hope and optimism will endure forever," Slayman's family said in their statement. "His legacy will be one that inspires patients, researchers, and health care professionals everywhere. Our family asks for respectful privacy as we remember the beautiful soul of our beloved Rick."

The pig kidney was provided by eGenesis of Cambridge, Massachusetts, from a pig donor that was genetically edited using technology to remove harmful pig genes and add certain human genes to improve its compatibility with humans.

The procedure was performed under a single FDA Expanded Access Protocol – known as compassionate use – granted to a single patient or group of patients with serious, life-threatening illnesses or conditions to gain access to experimental treatments or trials when no comparable treatment options or therapies exist.

News Source : https://www.patriotledger.com/story/news/2024/05/12/richard-slayman-weymouth-ma-death-massachusetts-general-hospital/73662132007/

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