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  1. Abstract

    Vitrification could enable long-term organ preservation, but only after loading high-concentration, potentially toxic cryoprotective agents (CPAs) by perfusion. In this paper, we combine a two-compartment Krogh cylinder model with a toxicity cost function to theoretically optimize the loading of CPA (VMP) in rat kidneys as a model system. First, based on kidney perfusion experiments, we systematically derived the parameters for a CPA transport loading model, including the following:Vb = 86.0% (ra = 3.86 μm),Lp = 1.5 × 10–14m3/(N·s),ω = 7.0 × 10–13 mol/(N·s),σ = 0.10. Next, we measured the toxicity cost function model parameters asα = 3.12 andβ = 9.39 × 10–6. Combining these models, we developed an improved kidney-loading protocol predicted to achieve vitrification while minimizing toxicity. The optimized protocol resulted in shorter exposure (25 min or 18.5% less) than the gold standard kidney-loading protocol for VMP, which had been developed based on decades of empirical practice. After testing both protocols on rat kidneys, we found comparable physical and biological outcomes. While we did not dramatically reduce toxicity, we did reduce the time. As our approach is now validated, it can be used on other organs lacking defined toxicity data to reduce CPA exposure time and provide a rapid path toward developing CPA perfusion protocols for other organs and CPAs.

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  2. Abstract

    Cryopreservation by vitrification has far-reaching implications. However, rewarming techniques that are rapid and scalable (both in throughput and biosystem size) for low concentrations of cryoprotective agent (CPA) for reduced toxicity are lacking, limiting the potential for translation. Here, we introduce a joule heating–based platform technology, whereby biosystems are rapidly rewarmed by contact with an electrical conductor that is fed a voltage pulse. We demonstrate successful cryopreservation of three model biosystems with thicknesses across three orders of magnitude, including adherent cells (~4 µm),Drosophila melanogasterembryos (~50 µm) and rat kidney slices (~1.2 mm) using low CPA concentrations (2–4 M). Using tunable voltage pulse widths from 10 µs to 100 ms, numerical simulation predicts that warming rates from 5 × 104to 6 × 108 °C/min can be achieved. Altogether, our results present a general solution to the cryopreservation of a broad spectrum of cellular, organismal and tissue-based biosystems.

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  3. Abstract

    Banking cryopreserved organs could transform transplantation into a planned procedure that more equitably reaches patients regardless of geographical and time constraints. Previous organ cryopreservation attempts have failed primarily due to ice formation, but a promising alternative is vitrification, or the rapid cooling of organs to a stable, ice-free, glass-like state. However, rewarming of vitrified organs can similarly fail due to ice crystallization if rewarming is too slow or cracking from thermal stress if rewarming is not uniform. Here we use “nanowarming,” which employs alternating magnetic fields to heat nanoparticles within the organ vasculature, to achieve both rapid and uniform warming, after which the nanoparticles are removed by perfusion. We show that vitrified kidneys can be cryogenically stored (up to 100 days) and successfully recovered by nanowarming to allow transplantation and restore life-sustaining full renal function in nephrectomized recipients in a male rat model. Scaling this technology may one day enable organ banking for improved transplantation.

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