Lecture Will Focus on First Pig-to-Human Kidney Transplant

Jayme E. Locke
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Jayme E. Locke, MD, MPH

Citation: Kidney News 14, 10/11

A leading transplant surgeon will present a state-of-the-art lecture on “Making the Impossible Possible: First-in-Human Clinical Grade Kidney Xenotransplant” on Friday, November 4.

The speaker will be Jayme E. Locke, MD, MPH, who is professor of surgery and the Arnold G. Diethelm, MD, Endowed Chair in Transplantation Surgery at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). She is also director of the Comprehensive Transplant Institute and chief of the Division of Abdominal Transplant Surgery.

In September 2021, Dr. Locke's team performed a first-of-its-kind transplant, placing two genetically modified pig kidneys into a brain-dead human after removing the recipient's native kidneys. The transplanted kidneys filtered blood and produced urine. The kidneys were not rejected and remained viable for the 74-hour length of the experiment with no transmission of porcine retroviruses detected. The researchers first published their study on January 20, 2022, which appeared in the April edition of the American Journal of Transplantation.

Dr. Locke specializes in innovative strategies for the transplantation of incompatible organs, disparities in access to and outcomes after organ transplantation, and transplantation in HIV-infected end-stage patients. She is the surgical director of the South's leading incompatible kidney transplant program and coordinator of the UAB kidney chain, which is the longest living kidney-transplant chain in the United States, with 126 donors and recipients. Only the University of California, San Francisco, has performed more kidney transplants than UAB since statistics began being kept in 1988. UAB has performed 9055 kidney transplants, according to the United Network for Organ Sharing, including almost 3435 living donor transplants.

Dr. Locke's research interests include complex statistical analyses and modeling of transplant outcomes and behavioral research focused on health disparities. She has authored more than 140 articles in peer-reviewed journals and 20 book chapters. She is a deputy editor of the American Journal of Transplantation and is an editorial board member of the Annals of Surgery.

She has received many honors, including a distinguished investigator award from the Association for Clinical and Translational Science and a clinical investigator award from the American Society of Transplantation.

Dr. Locke received her medical degree from the East Carolina University Brody School of Medicine before training in general surgery and multi-visceral abdominal transplantation at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. She also received a Master of Public Health degree with an emphasis in biostatistics and epidemiology from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.