David Bennett, the first person to receive a pig heart transplant, died two months after undergoing the surgery. He was 57 years old and suffered from life-threatening heart disease.
David Bennett, 57, who survived a heart transplant from a genetically modified pig, died two months after surgery, according to the University of Maryland Hospital Medical Center.
The patient had died at the center, which announced the groundbreaking procedure on January 10. Doctors did not specify the cause of death, and if the organ was rejected, they simply said the patient’s health had deteriorated, according to the Associated Press.
“We want this to be the beginning, not the end,” said the patient’s son. Bennett’s son thanked the hospital for offering to take part in the experiment, saying the family believed the new technology could help others and could help obtain organ transplants.
“We are grateful for every pivotal moment, every wild dream, every sleepless night that led to this historic effort. We want this story to be the beginning of hope, not the end,” said David Bennett Jr. (David Bennett) via from the hospital.
For decades, various scientific groups have worked on the cultivation of organs for transplantation in order to obtain more usable organs that are compatible with the patients who may need them.
Bennett received the heart because he was not a candidate for a human donor transplant, and because he was terminally ill, he had no choice in life without the heart. “He was either dead or had a transplant, and I wanted to live. I knew it was shot in the dark, but it was my choice,” Bennett said the day before he received the modified pig heart.
A few months before this transplant, he transplanted a kidney into a brain-dead patient in New York.