Research

Mayo Clinic scientists, doctors and surgeons develop liver transplant insights and innovations that make transplants safer and available to more people. They are actively involved in conducting laboratory studies, clinical trials and other research on every aspect of conditions related to liver transplants.

Here are a few examples:

  • Bioartificial liver. This innovation helps patients cope as they await a donor liver. Developed by Mayo Clinic doctors and researchers, new bioartificial livers use living cells from pig livers to filter a patient's blood in a process similar to that of kidney dialysis. The device is being tested before it becomes available in clinics and hospitals.
  • Magnetic resonance elastography. This innovative technology was developed by Mayo Clinic doctors and researchers as a noninvasive way to test for liver scarring. Someday it may reduce the need for liver biopsies in people with liver disease.
  • Immunosuppressive medications. This research examines the effect of antibody-mediated injury in liver-kidney transplants and how doing a multiorgan transplant may actually result in better outcomes.
  • Maximizing organ donors. Transplant physicians found that people with liver cancer have the same beneficial outcomes using organs donated by patients who died of cardiac death rather than brain death.
  • Cell therapies for liver disease. This research offers potential new treatments for several liver diseases and may improve the success of liver transplantation.
  • Triage system. Mayo Clinic researchers originally proposed, designed and tested the Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD). This system prioritizes people waiting for a transplant based on the severity of their condition and how urgently they may need a transplant.

Read more about the many liver transplant research studies supported by the Transplant Research Center.

Publications

See a list of publications by Mayo Clinic doctors on liver transplant on PubMed, a service of the National Library of Medicine.