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Vital Signs

Spring 2009

Liver Transplant Program Marks Silver Anniversary

Vital Signs Spring 2009 issue: Liver Transplant Program Marks Silver AnniversaryUCLA started its liver transplant program 25 years ago, at a time when there were only a few such programs in the country, and none west of the Mississippi River.

“When we began planning for it, it was still considered experimental by most observers,” recalls surgeon Ronald Busuttil, M.D., Ph.D., who performed the first liver transplant at UCLA on February 1, 1984. “It wasn’t until only a few months before we did that first case that the National Institutes of Health said it should be considered a therapeutic procedure. It was daunting, but it also was extraordinarily exhilarating.”

Today, the UCLA Liver Transplant Program is the largest in the world. A quarter-century after its inception, UCLA’s multidisciplinary program has performed nearly 5,000 transplants for infants, children and adults.

The program also has been a leader in the advancement of new surgical techniques that utilize the limited resource of donor organs more effectively. And the UCLA program is at the forefront of clinical research, offering patients access to the latest innovations in immunosuppressive therapy and treatment for complications of transplantation such as rejection and infection.

For more information about the UCLA Liver Transplant Program, as well as other transplant programs at UCLA, go to:

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