Rewriting Organ Donation

The Carnegie Mellon alumni magazine came in the mail the other day and I finally got around to browsing through the cover story on Tuomas Sandholm, a professor at CMU who is working on improving the organ donation system here in the US based on an approach called paired exchange.

In the case of kidney transplants, 12 people die each day in the United States while waiting for an organ. Many willing donors are not a match for their intended recipient because of variations in blood or tissue type. Paired exchange allows two patients to swap their incompatible live donors with each other to obtain suitable organs. Sandholm has been designing a system to make it easier to find matches out of thousands of potential pairs.

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