SOUDERTON, Pa. and GRONINGEN, Netherlands, Feb. 13, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Hemoglobin Oxygen Therapeutics LLC (HbO2 Therapeutics), a biopharmaceutical company specializing in oxygen therapeutics, today announced results from a pilot study on liver transplants conducted at the Netherlands largest transplantation center, the University Medical Center in Groningen (UMCG) under the direction of the lead investigator Professor Robert Porte, Head of Hepatobiliary Surgery and Liver Transplantation.
The study involved donor livers that were deemed unsuitable for regular transplantation. These organs were subjected to an innovative machine perfusion technology (a simulation of how the liver works in the body) using Hemopure, a novel synthetic oxygen solution that increases the oxygen-carrying capacity of blood. Given the solution's ability to safely transport oxygen from much colder temperatures to body heat, initially rejected livers appear more likely to respond positively, becoming suitable for transplantation.
The results showed that 16 livers that were initially rejected by all transplant centers in The Netherlands, including UMCG, underwent machine perfusion to assess the organ's viability at 37°C. Following viability testing including the ability to produce bile, ten donor livers were successfully reconditioned using Hemopure solution. A further benefit of applying this solution included the avoidance of any blood products during the perfusion process. HbO2 Therapeutics is pleased to announce 100% transplant and survival rates in the study including those patients receiving "refurbished" livers treated with Hemopure.
"We are thrilled to be collaborating with UMCG given that this is the first of its kind study with important variables tested in real time including individual liver differences, overall liver viability, and Hemopure perfusion," said Zafiris Zafirelis, CEO of HbO2 Therapeutics. "The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) estimates that over 13,700 people are currently waiting for a liver transplant nationwide, yet only about 8,250 transplants performed in 2018. Given the significant need to increase donor transplants, the key takeaway from this pilot study indicates that discarded donor livers could be refurbished with the help of Hemopure."
About Hemoglobin Oxygen Therapeutics LLC
HbO2 Therapeutics is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing a proprietary technology platform for oxygen-carrying solutions that increase the amount of oxygen transported throughout the body.
HbO2 Therapeutics two lead programs are Oxyglobin® [hemoglobin glutamer - 200 (bovine)] and Hemopure® [hemoglobin glutamer - 250 (bovine)] indicated for veterinary and human use, respectively.
Oxyglobin is the only oxygen-carrying solution approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) to treat all cause canine anemia.
Hemopure is approved in South Africa to treat anemia in adult surgical patients. In the US, Hemopure is only available through the FDA expanded access program to qualifying patients for whom blood transfusion is not an option, and who have exhausted all other treatments. Blood transfusion may not be an option due to religious beliefs, or because no compatible blood is available for a patient needing a transfusion.
Hemopure is also under development for other uses, including as a perfusion solution for other organs prior to transplantation. For more information, please visit www.hbo2therapeutics.com.
SOURCE Hemoglobin Oxygen Therapeutics