Design by guru design Pulling ahead Summer of 1959: Shumway and Lower master the technique of canine heart cross transplantation, although their dogs die after a few hours. 23 December 1959: Lower and Shumway perform their first successful canine heart transplant – the dog lived for eight days before tissue rejection set in. Early 1960: Barnard transplants a dog’s head and visits Demikhov in Russia who tells him: “Nothing is impossible, nothing.” 10 October 1960: Shumway and Lower present their groundbreaking research, “Orthotopic Homotransplantation of the Canine Heart”, at a forum of the American College of Surgeons at the Clearwater Hotel in San Francisco. Early 1962: On their 10th attempt, Kantrowitz and his assistant Yoshio Kondo successfully transplant a heart between puppies: Kantrowitz decides to focus on transplantation between infants in the hope that tissue rejection will not be an issue due to their under-developed immune systems. The second lap 27 March 1963: After having proved that a heart can be stored in saline for up to seven hours with no damage to the organ, Shumway announces: “We have the surgical technique now... I am confident that we will be transplanting hearts within the next decade.” Early 1963: The start of Shumway’s serious exploration into the detection issue of tissue rejection in cardiac transplantation (with an enormous amount of help from fellow team member, Gene Dong) Falling behind 1963: Barnard, believing that his chances of surgical success were slim in a politically reviled country at the bottom of Africa, loses some focus in the race. Instead he projects his ambition onto his 13 year-old daughter Deirdre by investing his time in honing her natural water skiing talent: “Somebody in the family, at least,” said Barnard, “was going to make it.” 23 January 1964: On this day, at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, Thomas Hardy, the first surgeon in medical history to transplant the human lung, unsuccessfully attempts to replace 68 year-old Boyd Rush’s heart with that of a chimpanzee. Hardy’s failure received a scathing response from Shumway: “Perhaps the cardiac surgeon should pause while society becomes accustomed to resurrection of the mythological chimera.” Hardy drops out of the race as swiftly as he had entered it. 1964: During this year Barnard, amid his water-skiing obsession, did find the time to experiment with canine renal transplantation, thereby not losing touch totally with the concept of transplantation. NEXT BACK Copyright (c) | www.heartofcapetown.co.za | All rights reserved