Quality in Organ Donation (QUOD)
Professor Rutger J Ploeg

Coordinating Principal Investigator: Rutger Ploeg
Principal Investigators:John Dark, Garbiel Oniscu, Gavin Pettigrew, Wayel Jassem, Isabel Quiroga, Neal Banga, Hynek Mergental, Elijah Ablorsu, Magdy Attia and Afshin Tavakoli
Expert Advisors:David Collett, James Neuberger, Nicholas Watkins, Fiona Wellington, Dale Gardiner
Research Students:Zeeshan Akhtar, Maria Kaisar and Rachel Thomas

One of the biggest challenges facing the transplant community today is the lack of good quality organs. Facing the prospect of a widening deficit between organ supply and demand in the next ten years, there becomes an urgent need to develop novel strategies to protect, resuscitate and repair donor organs. And thus improve organ quality and the outcomes for transplant recipients. Addressing this quality deficit is particularly important for organs obtained from extended criteria donors (older brain dead donors with additional co-morbidities) and donors after circulatory arrest.

What is QUOD?

The QUOD project is a national NHSBT funded programme led by Professor Rutger J Ploeg, Professor of Transplant Biology at the University of Oxford and Consultant Surgeon at the Oxford University Hospital OUH NHS Trust. The key aims of this initiative are:

  • to increase the number and quality of organs procured from brain dead donors and donors after cardiac death, by optimising donor management, resuscitating and preserving high-risk donor organs
  • to make previously unusable organs transplantable and increase the 'donor pool'
  • to identify pathways of injury and apply targeted interventions to repair donor organ injury
  • to translate validated experimental methods and technologies into clinical use and best practice protocols, and
  • to identify biomarkers and functional parameters that predict outcome following transplantation.
To achieve these key goals, we have formed a national Consortium consisting of experts from the intensive care and transplant units from across the United Kingdom in conjunction with NHSBT. Since 2013, we have been collecting information and biological samples (blood, urine & tissues) from appropriately consented donors. These samples are then stored safely in the biobank and clinical data from both donors and their recipients is used to identify adequate selection criteria for specific research projects. Samples from these donors are then allocated to researchers to analyse and correlate this to outcomes following transplantation. By doing this we aim to identify novel markers that can be used to predict the function and outcomes of transplantation, but also improve our understanding of the underlying pathways of donor organ injury. The Consortium has created a platform for trialling new therapeutic strategies aimed at resuscitating and repairing damaged donor organs to improve immediate function and increase long-term survival.

How will QUOD contribute to patient and donor care?

By targeting organ injury and improving organ quality we will increase the absolute number of life saving organs available for transplantation. In addition, better short and long-term outcomes after transplantation will improve organ and patient survival, reduce post-operative complications and the need for re-transplantation.

Recent Publications

Moers C, Pirenne J, Paul A, Ploeg RJ. Machine perfusion or cold storage in deceased-donor kidney transplantation. N Engl J Med. 2012, 366(8):770-1

Damman J, Seelen MA, Moers C, et al. Systemic Complement Activation in Deceased Donors Is Associated With Acute Rejection After Renal Transplantation in the Recipient. Transplantation, 2011, 92 (2): 163-169

Jochmans I, Moers C, Smits JM, et al. The prognostic value of renal resistance during hypothermic machine perfusion of deceased donor kidneys. Am J Transplant. 2011, 11(10), 2214-20

Nijboer WN, Schuurs TA, Damman J, et al. Kidney injury molecule-1 is an early noninvasive indicator for donor brain death-induced injury prior to kidney transplantation. Am J Transplant. 2009, 9 (8):1752-9

QUOD Protocols and Standard Operating Proceedures

All current QUOD documentation is in the process of ratification and will be published on this site when available.


Regular updates from QUOD can be found at www.quod.org.uk
Sign up to the QUOD newsletter by emailing contact@quod.org.uk

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