Donor to Recipient Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 by Lung Transplantation

Doctors from the University of Michigan Medical School have reported a case of the proven donor to recipient transmission of SARS-CoV 2 despite negative pre-procurement donor nasopharyngeal SARS-CoV-2 testing and transmission to health care worker associated with the transplant procedure. An organ donor woman who met with a road traffic accident and brain dead after two days of hospitalization.

She had no history of travel or any COVID-19 related symptoms, unknown history of recent exposure, or suspected infection with SARS-CoV-2. The recipient was with chronic obstructive lung disease and negative 12 hours before the transplant for SARS-Cov-2 RT-PCR. After an uneventful transplant procedure, the patient’s condition deteriorated after 2 days of transplant. During investigation and management of the conditions, the BAL sample was positive for SARS-CoV-2, the recipient died post-transplant day 61, her SARS-CoV-2 PCR remained positive on PTD 60.

Testing for SARS-CoV-2 was performed for high-risk exposed health care providers, one thoracic surgeon was tested positive. Serious detailed investigations including SARS-CoV-2 sequencing of samples from the donor, recipient, health care workers, and the state of Michigan demonstrated that the recipient, as well as surgeon, acquired the SARS- CoV-2 from the donor’s lung.

Ref link: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/ajt.16532