Traditionally, organs donors who died a circulatory death (one in which the heart stops working) were not viable for transplants. The reasoning behind this is that once the heart dies, all other organs quickly die as well due to a lack of oxygen. Now, a company known as Transmedics has developed what they are calling the “Organ Care System.” The system works by securing the heart in a sterile, humidity- and temperature-controlled chamber which mimics the conditions inside of the human body. The system also contains a supply of organ donor blood that is infused with oxygen and other essential nutrients which help keep the heart alive and beating.
In Australia and Europe, the system has aided in 15 successful heart transplants, and is still in trials in the US. The system can also be used to support lungs, kidneys, and livers before transplants. The Organ Care system will likely increase the number of available viable organs for transplant.
(Source: Popular Science)