The Quality in Organ Donation (QUOD) initiative aims to identify pathways of injury and repair in donors organs.
Despite the advances made in recent years in the realms of organ donation and transplantation, a significant and widening disparity exists between organ supply and demand. This disparity is predicted to worsen over the course of the next decade making this the biggest challenge facing the transplant community today.
The QUOD initiative is led by Professor Rutger J Ploeg, Professor of Transplant Biology and Consultant Transplant Surgeon.
Despite the increasing awareness of the importance of transplantation there is a widening deficit between organ supply and clinical need. This pattern that is predicted to worsen over the next 10 years.
To address this disparity the transplant community has been turning to organs previously considered unsuitable for transplantation. This has included obtaining organs from extended criteria donors (older heart beating donors with additional co-morbidities) and non-heart beating donors.
The QUOD initiative aims to identify pathways of injury and repair in donors organs, identifying biomarkers which can be used to predict the outcomes of transplantation. The initiative also aims to be a platform for investigating interventional strategies in the donor, that can improve the outcomes of transplantation.
As of January 2020, the QUOD biobank contains samples from nearly 5,000 patients, has received 63 applications for research and has distributed over 13,000 samples. Studies supported by QUOD resources have yielded 7 publications, 3 doctoral dissertations, and 21 major conference presentations spanning proteomics, genomics, immunology, and other disciplines. Research projects have been conducted throughout the UK as well as in the United States, the Netherlands, and Germany, and QUOD has been engaged to support research with a range of high-level projects including the Human Cell Atlas, the PITHIA trial, UK Renal Imaging Network, NNRCO, and the Medicines Discovery Catapult. We invite any academic or industrial researchers interested in using our samples and data to contact us at email@example.com or visit quod.org.uk for further details.
Key aims of QUOD
- Increase the number and quality of organs procured from heart-beating and non heart beating donors for transplantation.
- Make previously unusable organs transplantable and increase the "donor pool".
- Identify pathways of injury and apply targeted interventions to repair donor organ injury.
- Translate validated experimental methods and technologies into clinical use and best practice protocols.
- Identify bio-markers and functional parameters that predict outcome following transplantation.
- Streamline collaboration and dissemination between scientific and clinical experts in academic institutions across the United Kingdom.
A multi-disciplinary team of researchers in Oxford and Newcastle, led by Professor Rutger Ploeg from the Nuffield Department of Surgical Sciences, has been awarded a grant of £1.7 million from the Medical Research Council. The four-year grant will enable the expansion of the successful Quality in Organ Donation (QUOD) initiative, currently funded and supported by NHS Blood and Transplant.