Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Physiology and Biophysics

First Advisor

Stefano Toldo, Ph.D.


There is a chronic lack of donor hearts to meet the need for heart transplant both in the US and worldwide. Further, the use of available hearts is limited by the short period between collection and implantation during which the heart can be safely preserved ex vivo. Using mid-thermic Langendorff machine perfusion, we have been able to preserve the metabolic function of a healthy heart for up to 8 hours, twice the limit for current static cold storage. We have also been able to preserve the metabolic function of a damaged DCD Heart collected 30 minutes after cardiac arrest for a period of 8 hours. We further investigated whether it was possible to improve the preservation of DCD heart using treatment with 10 μM Triiodothyronine to stimulate the tissue metabolism and we did find a reduction in damage markers in the treated DCD hearts as compared to the untreated group.


© William P. Adams

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