A paper published in the journal Science showed that by using gene editing technology, researchers were able to inactivate all the Porcine Endogenous Retroviruses (PERVs) in a porcine primary cell line and generated PERV-inactivated pigs via somatic cell nuclear transfer.

Dr. Adam Griesemer, Director, Large Animal Xenotransplantation Laboratory, Columbia Center for Translational Immunology at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center is available for third-party commentary on this advancement.

According to Dr. Griesemer, "the production of a pig from the edited genome is a difficult process, and the fact that researchers were able to do that is a big step forward. It will still be challenging to further modify the genome of that animal to express either human proteins that can protect an organ after transplant, or to remove certain pig proteins or carbohydrates that could be targets of organ rejection. Each advancement of any of the groups working in xenotransplantation brings us that much closer to the successful clinical application of the technology.”

If interested, we'd be happy to coordinate interviews with Dr. Griesemer.