Clinical trials study new medications and therapies, playing an integral role in transplant immunology research at Mayo Clinic.
A major limitation of clinical trials in transplantation is that the long-term endpoints used, such as graft loss, take years to measure. The Transplant Immunology Program uses surrogate efficacy endpoints — biomarkers — to study graft failure. This allows the program to determine the efficacy of new therapeutic interventions in a much shorter time frame.
For example, in a multicenter trial, funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and based on one-year protocol biopsies, the team is analyzing gene expression within grafts in order to determine which are likely to fail in subsequent years.
The ultimate goal of clinical studies is to develop new therapies for transplant recipients using a pioneering approach:
- Innovative clinical trial design
- Novel therapeutic targets
- Cooperation between a consortium of pharmaceutical companies, regulatory agencies and the clinical research community