Muhammad Mohiuddin, The Figure Behind the Success of Pig Heart Transplant

 A man in the United States (US) for the first time underwent a pig heart transplant. It's probably too early to say this transplant will actually work. But this high-level experimental operation remains history in the medical world, and there is Muhammad Mohiuddin behind it.

The team of doctors at the University of Maryland Medical Center who performed the transplant procedure said the operation demonstrated the possibility that genetically modified animal organs could function in the human body.

As quoted from CNN, the pig's heart has been genetically modified to remove the sugar content that often rejects organs quickly in its cells.

Dr Muhammad Mohiuddin, scientific director of the animal-to-human transplant program at the University of Maryland Medical Center with Dr. Bartley P. Griffith, led the historic and successful operation. Up to three days after the operation, the patient who received the pig heart transplant was in good condition.

"If this is successful, there will be an endless supply of similar organs for suffering patients," said Dr Mohiuddin.

He said organ donations in the US are very few, while the list of patients in need of transplants continues to grow. This condition prompted doctors and scientists to turn to animal organs to fulfill it.

Muhammad Mohiuddin's Profile

Dr Mohiuddin is Professor of Surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine School of Medicine. Quoted from the University of Maryland website, Dr Mohiuddin currently serves as the Chief of Transplantation Section of Cardiothoracic Surgery Research Program at the University of Maryland Medical Center as well as a Senior Scientist at the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Prior to joining the NIH in 2005, he held faculty positions at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and Rush University, Chicago. Dr Mohiuddin has been involved in the field of xenotransplantation since 1992 and has been instrumental in initiating xenotransplantation research programs at the above-mentioned institutions.

Dr Mohiuddin received his MBBS (MD) from Dow Medical College in Karachi, Pakistan and after completing his surgical training at Civil Hospital Karachi, he moved to the USA, where he completed his first fellowship in Transplantation Biology at University of Pennsylvania (Verdi DiSesa), then also bone marrow transplantation at the Institute of Cellular Therapeutics (Suzanne Ildstad), MCP Hahnemann University (now Drexel University).

Dr Mohiuddin's main interest is to understand the role of B lymphocytes in transplantation, specifically xenograft rejection. His other interests include transplant tolerance and immune modulation.

He has made several contributions in the field of transplantation and xenotransplantation with more than 120 publications and more than 100 abstracts and presentations.

His research team holds the record for the longest xenograft survival in a large animal model. The immunosuppressive regimen developed under his leadership, is currently used extensively throughout the xenotransplantation field.

In addition, Dr Mohiuddin is an elected board member of the International Xenotransplantation Association / TTS. He is also an honorary member of the Transplantation Society and the American Society of Transplant Physicians.

He reviewed manuscripts for a number of transplant-related journals, and received several NIH and non-NIH awards during his academic career. His recent work in cardiac xenotransplantation was widely highlighted in the mass media around the world.

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