Paragonix Technologies, Inc., a leading organ transplant company, announces a milestone achievement with Massachusetts General Hospital (Boston, MA) successfully accessing a donor heart over a total of 2,506 nautical miles away using the Paragonix SherpaPak® Cardiac Transport System. Beginning in Juneau, Alaska, and ending in Boston, Massachusetts, the procurement distance beats previous records in distance to safely deliver a donor heart to a recipient.
Recent policy changes in the U.S. organ allocation system have provided for improved efficiency, fairness and equity, and have also led to a concomitant increased need to protect donor organs over broader geographic distances. Conventional ice-based methods of transporting organs over greater geographic distances bear the risk of organ damage, such as due to exposure to temperatures at or below freezing. Advanced Organ Preservation with the FDA-cleared Paragonix SherpPak® Cardiac Transport System is designed to protect organs during transport.
“Traditionally, the longer an organ spends between donors, the greater the risk of complications,” said Dr. David D’Alessandro, MD, Surgical Director, Heart Transplant Program at Massachusetts General Hospital. “Five years ago, I could never have imagined this journey being possible. The fact that we were able to transport this organ safely and successfully over such a long distance is a testament to the value of Advanced Organ Preservation and the dedication of everyone involved. By continuing to push the boundaries in this area, we can help to ensure that more patients in need have access to life-saving donor organs, regardless of where they are located.”
The Paragonix SherpaPak Cardiac Transport System is an FDA-cleared and CE-marked Advanced Organ Preservation device specifically designed to control donor heart preservation, providing physicians with stable temperature maintenance technology. The transport in the device is accompanied by real-time data monitoring and supported by HIPAA-compliant communication channels via the Paragonix mobile App. The Paragonix SherpaPak® has protected close to 3,000 donor hearts and has been adopted by over 80 transplant centers worldwide.
“With the shortage of organs available for transplant, and an ever-growing number of patients on the waitlist, it is critical that we enable centers to access organs from as many geographies as possible,” said Dr. Lisa Anderson, CEO and President of Paragonix Technologies. “We are so proud to have aided the team at MGH in this monumental case that has allowed them to bring a life-saving heart from over 2,500 miles to a patient in their care.”
The Paragonix SherpaPak® Cardiac Transport System is intended to be used for the static hypothermic preservation of hearts during transportation and eventual transplantation into a recipient using cold storage solutions indicated for use with the heart.
The intended organ storage time for the Paragonix SherpaPak® Cardiac Transport System is up to 4 hours. Donor hearts exceeding clinically accepted static hypothermic preservation times should be evaluated by the transplant surgeon to determine transplantability in accordance with accepted clinical guidelines and in the best medical interest of the intended recipient.