Transplantation

Transplantation: timeline of key events

Carrel was a surgeon and biologist. Inspired by lessons he took from from an embroideress, he developed new techniques for suturing blood vessels that minimised damage to the vascular wall. He was awarded the 1912 Nobel Prize for Medicine in recognition of 'his work on vascular structure and the transplantation of blood vessels and organs'. During World War I he helped develop a new method for treating wounds based on chlorine, which was a major advance in the care of traumatic wounds. In the 1930s he helped create a glass perfusion pump, a forerunner to the artificial heart. His reputation later became marred in controversy because of his strong support for Eugenic policies of sterilisation for those with families with hereditary diseases and a criminal history as well euthanasia for the mentally defective. In 1944 he was singled out for collaboration with the Nazis under the Vichy government, but he died before going on trial. 1873-06-28T00:00:00+0000Snell was a major founder of immunogenetics as a discipline. He is best known for helping to identify the major histocompatibility complex, a group of genes that code for proteins found on the surface of cells that help the immune system differentiate between self and nonself cells, and demonstrating its role in tissue graft rejection. This work laid the foundation for carrying out successful transplants in both animals and humans. Snell shared the 1980 Nobel Prize for Medicine for 'discoveries concerning genetically determined structures on the cell surface that regulate immunological reactions'.1903-12-19T00:00:00+0000Kolff invented the first kidney dialysis machine in 1943 as a young physician working at the University of Groningen Hospital in the Netherlands. He pioneered the machine after watching a young man die slowly from kidney failure. The machine saves the lives of hundreds of thousands of patients with chronic kidney disease each year.1911-02-14T00:00:00+0000Medawar was a zoologist and biologist whose studies of graft rejection demonstrated the principle of acquired immunological tolerance, the state by which substances originally considered foreign become regarded as self by the immune system. This finding laid the foundation for tissue and organ transplantation. In 1960 Medawar was awarded the Nobel Prize for the work he did in the area. 1915-02-28T00:00:00+0000Dausset was an immunologist. In 1952 he noticed that white blood cells taken from patients who had received blood transfusions agglutinated when mixed with antibodies. He realised this was due to the genetic differences between donors and recipients. Eight years later he discovered the first leukocyte antigen, an important marker found on the surface of cells that helps the immune system recognise foreign substances. He subsequently worked out the complex relationship between tissue compatibility and graft survival. In 1980 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for his work on tissue typing which is essential to the success of transplants. 1916-10-19T00:00:00+0000Murray was a plastic surgeon. He performed the first successful kidney transplant between identical twins in 1954. The operation last five and half hours and involved the transplantation of a healthy kidney from Robert Herrick into his twin brother, Richard, who was dying of chronic nephritis. Four years later Murray performed the first successful transplant from a non-identical donor and in 1962 the first cadaveric renal transplant. In 1990 Murray shared the Nobel Prize for Medicine for 'discoveries concerning organ and cell transplantation in the treatment of human disease.' 1919-04-01T00:00:00+0000Good was a physician and scientific researcher whose work on the cellular mechanisms of immunity earned him the reputation as one of the founders of modern immunology. In 1962 he helped demonstrate the two-component system of immunity. The first consisted of T cells, produced by the thymus gland, which he showed were important players in cell-mediated immunity. The second were the B cells, produced by the bone marrow, which he identified as responsible for producing antibodies. Three years later he demonstrated the important role tonsils play in the immune system. In addition to these landmark discoveries, he worked out, through experiments on mice, the crucial role of T cells in the rejection of skin allografts. He used this finding to perform the first successful bone marrow transplant between persons who were not identical twins. 1922-05-21T00:00:00+0000Barnard was a cardiac surgeon who performed the world's first successful human to human heart transplant, in 1967. He carried this out at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town on Louis Washansky, a 53 year old grocer. Washanasky received the heart of Denise Darvall, a young woman who was declared brain dead after being run over by car. He died from pneumonia 18 days after the heart transplant.1922-11-08T00:00:00+0000Carrel was a French surgeon and biologist. Inspired by lessons he took from from an embroideress, he developed new techniques for suturing blood vessels that minimised damage to the vascular wall. He was awarded the 1912 Nobel Prize for Medicine in recognition of 'his work on vascular structure and the transplantation of blood vessels and organs'. During World War I he helped develop a new method for treating wounds based on chlorine, which was a major advance in the care of traumatic wounds. In the 1930s he helped create a glass perfusion pump, a forerunner to the artificial heart. His reputation later became marred in controversy because of his strong support for Eugenic policies of sterilisation for those with families with hereditary diseases and a criminal history as well euthanasia for the mentally defective. In 1944 he was singled out for collaboration with the Nazis under the Vichy government, but he died before going on trial.1944-11-05T00:00:00+0000Each sick child was terminally ill and chemotherapy was of no further use. Lethal levels of radiation were used to try to eradicate the leukaemia, followed by the infusion of genetically identical marrow (from the healthy twin).1959-01-01T00:00:00+0000The proceedure was performed by physician-scientist Robert Good to treat boy born with severe combined immunodeficiency. 1968-01-01T00:00:00+0000The drug was developed by Gertrude Elion in 1957 as part of her development of purine analogues. 1968-03-01T00:00:00+0000The transplant was carried out by Richard O'Reilly and Robert Good. This lays the foundation for the routine use of bone marrow transplants for treating some blood cancers. Such transplants are classed as immunotherapy because immune cells from the donor kill cancer cells in the recipient. 1973-01-01T00:00:00+0000Orthoclone OKT3 (muromonamb0CD3) was approved as an immunosuppressant drug to reduce patients' rejection of their kidney transplants. It is a mouse-derived (murine) monoclonal antibody (Muromonab-CD3) that targets a membrane protein on the surface of T cells. OKT3 was first developed in 1979 by Patrick Kung at Ortho Diagnostics as tool to identify different T-cell subsets in humans. It took Kung time to persuade his company to develop the monoclonal antibody as a drug. 1986-06-19T00:00:00+0000Medawar was a zoologist and biologist whose work on skin grafts demonstrated the principle of acquired immunological tolerance, the state by which substances originally considered foreign become regarded as self by the immune system. His work helped improve the success of tissue and organ transplants. In 1960 Medawar was awarded the Nobel Prize for the work he did in the area. 1987-10-02T00:00:00+0000Snell was a major founder of immunogenetics as a discipline. He is best known for helping to identify the major histocompatibility complex, a group of genes that code for proteins found on the surface of cells that help the immune system differentiate between self and nonself cells, and demonstrating its role in tissue graft rejection. This work laid the foundation for carrying out successful transplants in both animals and humans. Snell shared the 1980 Nobel Prize for Medicine for 'discoveries concerning genetically determined structures on the cell surface that regulate immunological reactions'.1996-06-06T00:00:00+0000Barnard was a South African cardiac surgeon who performed the world's first successful human to human heart transplant, in 1967. He carried this out at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town on Louis Washansky, a 53 year old grocer. Washanasky received the heart of Denise Darvall, a young woman who was declared brain dead after being run over by car. He died from pneumonia 18 days after the heart transplant. 2001-09-02T00:00:00+0000Good was an American physician and scientific researcher whose work on the cellular mechanisms of immunity earned him the reputation as one of the founders of modern immunology. In 1962 he helped demonstrate the two-component system of immunity. The first consisted of T cells, produced by the thymus gland, which he showed were important players in cell-mediated immunity. The second were the B cells, produced by the bone marrow, which he identified as responsible for producing antibodies. Three years later he demonstrated the important role tonsils play in the immune system. In addition to these landmark discoveries, he worked out, through experiments on mice, the crucial role of T cells in the rejection of skin allografts. He used this finding to perform the first successful bone marrow transplant between persons who were not identical twins.2003-06-13T00:00:00+0000Kolff was a Dutch-American physician who invented the first kidney dialysis machine.2009-02-11T00:00:00+0000Dausset was a French immunologist. In 1952 he noticed that white blood cells taken from patients who had received blood transfusions agglutinated when mixed with antibodies. He realised this was due to the genetic differences between donors and recipients. Eight years later he discovered the first leukocyte antigen, an important marker found on the surface of cells that helps the immune system recognise foreign substances. He subsequently worked out the complex relationship between tissue compatibility and graft survival. In 1980 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for his work on tissue typing which is essential to the success of transplants. 2009-06-06T00:00:00+0000Murray was an American plastic surgeon. He performed the first successful kidney transplant between identical twins in 1954. The operation last five and half hours and involved the transplantation of a healthy kidney from Robert Herrick into his twin brother, Richard, who was dying of chronic nephritis. Four years later Murray performed the first successful transplant from a non-identical donor and in 1962 the first cadaveric renal transplant. In 1990 Murray shared the Nobel Prize for Medicine for 'discoveries concerning organ and cell transplantation in the treatment of human disease.' 2012-11-26T00:00:00+0000
Date Event People Places
28 Jun 1873Alexis Carrel was born in Sainte-Foy-lès-Lyon, FranceCarrelRockefeller University
19 Dec 1903George D Snell was born in Bradford MA, USASnellJackson Laboratory
14 Feb 1911Willem J Kolff was born Leiden, NetherlandsKolff 
28 Feb 1915Peter Brian Medawar was born in Rio de Janeiro, BrazilMedawarUniversity College London
19 Oct 1916Jean Dausset was born in Toulouse, FranceDaussetUniversity of Paris
1 Apr 1919Joseph Murray was born in Milford MA, USAJoseph MurrayBrigham and Women's Hospital
21 May 1922Robert A Good was born in Crosby, Minnesota, USAGoodUniversity of Minnesota
8 Nov 1922Christiaan Barnard was born in Beaufort West, South AfricaBarnardUniversity of Cape Town
5 Nov 1944Alexis Carrel diedCarrelRockefeller University
1959Bone marrow transplants in two sets of identical twin girls fails to eradicate leukaemiaThomas, Ferrebee, Sahler Bassett Medical Center
1968First successful bone marrow transplant from a siblingGoodMemorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
March 1968FDA approved azathioprine, an immunosuppressant to prevent rejection of kidney transplantsElionWellcome Research Laboratories
1973First successful bone marrow transplant from unrelated donorGood, O'ReillyMemorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
June 1986First monoclonal antibody approved as a drug for use in humansChang, Kung, Gringas, Schlossman, GoldsteinOrtho Diagnostics
2 Oct 1987Peter Medawar diedMedawarUniversity College London
6 Jun 1996George D Snell diedSnellJackson Laboratory
2 Sep 2001Christiaan Barnard diedBarnardUniversity of Cape Town
13 Jun 2003Robert A Good diedGoodUniversity of Minnesota
11 Feb 2009Willem J Kolff diedKolff 
6 Jun 2009Jean Dausset diedDaussetUniversity of Paris
26 Nov 2012Joseph Murray diedJoseph MurrayBrigham and Women's Hospital

28 Jun 1873

Alexis Carrel was born in Sainte-Foy-lès-Lyon, France

19 Dec 1903

George D Snell was born in Bradford MA, USA

14 Feb 1911

Willem J Kolff was born Leiden, Netherlands

28 Feb 1915

Peter Brian Medawar was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

19 Oct 1916

Jean Dausset was born in Toulouse, France

1 Apr 1919

Joseph Murray was born in Milford MA, USA

21 May 1922

Robert A Good was born in Crosby, Minnesota, USA

8 Nov 1922

Christiaan Barnard was born in Beaufort West, South Africa

5 Nov 1944

Alexis Carrel died

1959

Bone marrow transplants in two sets of identical twin girls fails to eradicate leukaemia

1968

First successful bone marrow transplant from a sibling

Mar 1968

FDA approved azathioprine, an immunosuppressant to prevent rejection of kidney transplants

1973

First successful bone marrow transplant from unrelated donor

Jun 1986

First monoclonal antibody approved as a drug for use in humans

2 Oct 1987

Peter Medawar died

6 Jun 1996

George D Snell died

2 Sep 2001

Christiaan Barnard died

13 Jun 2003

Robert A Good died

11 Feb 2009

Willem J Kolff died

6 Jun 2009

Jean Dausset died

26 Nov 2012

Joseph Murray died