This chapter discusses the unique features of different experimental models of organ transplantation, explaining how these features may make some models more suitable than others would for certain types of investigations. It provides examples of clinical problems in which experimental models have provided critical insights. Animal models play a key role in advancing the field of transplantation. Small animal models provide superior insight into immunologic mechanisms, but results are often strain specific. Large animal models are critical for clinical translation and xenotransplantation studies. Heterotopic transplantation of hearts into the abdominal cavity of recipients is perhaps the most widely used experimental model of vascularized organ transplantation. The chapter presents three examples that highlight the areas in which refinement of models would increase their utility as preclinical tools. Currently, most interventions to avoid or treat antibody-mediated rejection (such as treatment with IVIG or proteosome inhibitors) are tested in human transplant recipients.
- Clinical translational studies
- Heterotopic transplantation
- Large animal transplant models
- Small animal transplant models
- Vascularized organ transplantation
- Xenotransplantation studies