Using a storage method based on hypothermic (4° C) perfusion with a water-based asanguinous solution the dog heart has been preserved for up to 72 hours in a viable condition. The ultimate functional test of the viability of such hearts is orthotopic transplantation. Seven of eight dog hearts stored for 72 hours were able to support the recipient circulation in a stable manner after acute orthotopic transplantation. The donor hearts maintained a mean arterial pressure of 70-100 mmHg, left atrial pressure 5-12 cm H2O, and maximum dp/dt of the left ventricular pressure was 1,200-2,400 mmHg/second. No myocardial stimulants were used. The results of 72 hours' hypothermic perfusion storage were superior to those of previously reported six hours' non-perfusion storage. A comment is made on the empirical nature of this field.
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