Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

SCIENCE FILE / An exploration of issues and trends
affecting science, medicine and the government | Science
in Brief

Scientists Urge Moratorium on Use of Animal Organs in Transplants

January 22, 1998

Several scientists Wednesday called for a moratorium on the use of animal organs and tissues in human transplants because of the potential risk of animal viruses. A number of companies have been developing pigs with human genes in the hope of using them as donors, but researchers recently found that pigs contain several so-called endogenous viruses that can infect human cells in the laboratory. Critics fear that the viruses could cause cancer or other diseases. About 100 people have received pig tissues.

The call for a moratorium was addressed to a meeting of the Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health Wednesday and today to reconsider guidelines for xenotransplants. An FDA spokesman said he did not expect a moratorium to be implemented today.

Compiled by Times medical writer Thomas H. Maugh II

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|