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Open Access Editorial

The ONE Study compares cell therapy products in organ transplantation: introduction to a review series on suppressive monocyte-derived cells

Edward K Geissler

Author Affiliations

Department of Surgery, University Hospital Regensburg, University of Regensburg, Regensburg, Franz-Josef-Strauss-Allee 11, 93053, Regensburg, Germany

Transplantation Research 2012, 1:11  doi:10.1186/2047-1440-1-11

Published: 28 September 2012

First paragraph (this article has no abstract)

Organ transplantation has evolved into a reliable life-saving procedure where good organ function is quickly restored by the transplant and, typically, the patient can return to an active lifestyle. Unfortunately, the human immune system reacts strongly against allogeneic tissues, and will destroy a transplanted organ within days or weeks after transplantation if the immune system is not depleted or inhibited by immunosuppressive drugs. Near elimination of the immune system through non-specific [1] or specific depletive therapies [2] prior to transplantation is one strategy that is effective at preventing early reactions to the graft, and in a few cases in establishing tolerance-promoting chimerism [3,4]. But these treatments are harsh with significant side effects, and donor tolerance is not assured after the immune system recovers. Thus, the current standard of care for transplant recipients involves the use of general immunosuppressive drugs that reduce graft destruction. The downside of their use is that the whole immune system is impaired, often causing a myriad of side-effects (for example, toxicity, infection, and malignancy), and chronic rejection remains a long-term problem. The lack of improvement in 10-year organ survival rates over the past decades for renal [5] and liver [6] transplantation highlight the need for new therapeutic approaches to prevent organ destruction.