We report orthotopic (life-supporting) survival of genetically engineered porcine cardiac xenografts (with six gene modifications) for almost 9 months in baboon recipients. This work builds on our previously reported heterotopic cardiac xenograft (three gene modifications) survival up to 945 days with an anti-CD40 monoclonal antibody-based immunosuppression. In this current study, life-supporting xenografts containing multiple human complement regulatory, thromboregulatory, and anti-inflammatory proteins, in addition to growth hormone receptor knockout (KO) and carbohydrate antigen KOs, were transplanted in the baboons. Selective "multi-gene" xenografts demonstrate survival greater than 8 months without the requirement of adjunctive medications and without evidence of abnormal xenograft thickness or rejection. These data demonstrate that selective "multi-gene" modifications improve cardiac xenograft survival significantly and may be foundational for paving the way to bridge transplantation in humans.
Keywords: CRISPR; cardiac xenotransplantation; heart failure; pig heart; xenotransplantation.
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