Because of the tremendous success of clinical transplantation of the liver and other organs in the last three decades, the demand for organs for transplantation has risen sharply and there is now a substantial shortage. The utilization of organs from other species, xenotransplantation, is increasingly viewed as a potential solution to this problem. The major limitation to xenotransplantation is the formidable immunological barriers that prevent the successful transplantation of non-human organs into human recipients. Here we review current knowledge about the immunology of xenotransplantation and the limited clinical and experimental experience in xenotransplantation of the liver.
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