There are around 5,000 people waiting for a kidney transplant in the UK, but not everyone has family or friends who are able to donate them a live donor kidney. Kidneys from deceased donors make up about two-thirds of all transplants, but the outcomes are not as good as live donor kidneys, especially in the short term.  

That’s why we’ve contributed over £58,000 to fund a pioneering clinical trial, for kidney transplant patients right here in Leeds. The trial will begin next month and is led by Mr Ahmed Ghoneima, Clinical Research Fellow and supervised by Mr Adam Barlow, Consultant Renal Transplant Surgeon at Leeds Teaching Hospitals.

“We want to give all of our patients the chance to live their life to the full, many have been on dialysis for a number of years, which can have a real impact on their day-to-day life. Unfortunately, there aren’t enough live kidney donors, so we need to improve other options for kidney transplants.

Over 45% of kidneys come from donation after cardiac death donors (DCD), and more than half of these are ‘sleepy’ kidneys, which means they don’t start to work properly straight away and many people have to spend a period of time on dialysis after their transplant which could extend from days to weeks before they can return home.

We recognise this has not only a physical, but also a psychological impact on our patients, and want to do whatever we can to improve outcomes.”

In collaboration with Zurich University Hospital, a world leader in transplant research, Ahmed and his team are launching the HOPE (hypothermic oxygenated perfusion) trial in March. If eligible, all patients will be offered the chance to be part of this research, looking into how pumping oxygen into the donor kidney, can help preserve its condition before a transplant.

Dr Ghoneima and his team, hope that this could reduce the rate of ‘sleepy’ kidneys by over 15%, helping more people get back to their normal life again, with fewer initial complications.