A Tribute to Jean Hamburger's Contribution to Organ Transplantation
American journal of transplantation : official journal of the American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Transplant Surgeons 2010 Nov; 10(11): 2392-5
Jean Hamburger, one of the pioneers of scientific medicine in the mid-20th century, who was involved in the inception of intensive care, nephrology, hemodialysis and scientific clinical research, has also been one of the very few fathers of human organ transplantation. He was involved in the primary French kidney transplantations in 1950, and in 1952, he realized the first allotransplantation in the world of a kidney removed from a voluntary living donor. At the same time, he was the first to describe the various clinical and pathological aspects of acute rejection. He suggested the use of cortisone for the treatment of rejection as early as 1950 and promoted nonlethal body irradiation, which was successfully used in 1959 both by John Merrill in Boston and by himself in Paris, to prevent allograft rejection. In October 1962, in collaboration with Maurice Goulon, he was the first to use a kidney removed from an individual in 'coma dépassé'. He and his group contributed to transplant immunosuppression, to transplant immunology, to organ preservation, to acute and chronic rejection pathology and so on. As early as 1956-1957, he understood the potential importance of Jean Dausset's discovery for transplantation.