Xenotransplantation-associated infectious risk: a WHO consultation

Fishman Jay A., Linda Scobie, Yasuhiro Takeuchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

117 Citations (Scopus)


Xenotransplantation carries the potential risk of the transmission of infection with the cells or tissues of the graft. The degree of risk is unknown in the absence of clinical trials. The clinical application of xenotransplantation has important implications for infectious disease surveillance, both at the national and international levels. Preclinical data indicate that infectious disease events associated with clinical xenotransplantation from swine, should they occur, will be rare; data in human trials are limited but have demonstrated no transmission of porcine microorganisms including porcine endogenous retrovirus. Xenotransplantation will necessitate the development of surveillance programs to detect known infectious agents and, potentially, previously unknown or unexpected pathogens.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-81
Number of pages10
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2012


  • xenotransplantation
  • infectious disease
  • risk of infection
  • World Health Organisation


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