Organ Transplant: An Interview with Dr. Lili Feng, Professor at the Baylor School of Medicine (Photo)
(Clearwisdom.net) After the hideous crimes at Sujiatun Death Camp were exposed, the international community has been closely monitoring the allegations. A reporter from the Epochtimes interviewed Dr. Lili Feng of the Baylor School of Medicine in Texas.
Sujiatun Death Camp
Reporter (R): Have you heard about the Sujiatun Death Camp?
Dr. Lili Feng (F): Yes. Sujiatun is the ultimate disrespect for the life of Falun Gong practitioners. Just think about it. You are rounded up for the purpose of harvesting your organs while you are still alive. Then, you lose your life after you are found to be a match for someone in the need of an organ transplant. Then your organs are removed. Is there anything more cold-blooded than this?
The surgeons who removed the organs violated the Hippocratic Oath and the basic ethical standards of a doctor. In fact, these people not only committed crimes against the victims, but also against the recipients of the organs, who did not know the source of the organs. The recipients of the organs are also being hurt in the long run. As for those who performed the operation, they also violated the Hippocratic Oath.
R: I called several hospitals in Shenyang city. The doctors indicated that all kidneys are from healthy young people. The transplant success rate is 90%. I was also told that the patients could have transplant operations within days. There are web pages that claim that a suitable donor can be found within a week. The International Organ Transplant Center indicated that they have a stable supply of organs. Is it easy to find a donor from the Chinese medical perspective?
F: Based on their claim, we can assume that in China there is a large number of donors available, who are the perfect match for a large number of organ transplant operations, within a short period of time. This indirectly proves the existence of a death camp.
From the medical point of view, it is not easy at all to find a suitable donor. To reduce the rejection, the blood type has to be a match and the Panel Reactive Antibody (PRA) should be negative. To decrease the chance of immunologic reaction, first, the blood types (ABO blood type) of the recipient and the donor must be the same; the PRA (Panel reactive antibody, is preferable negative; lymphocytes toxicology result must be <100r negative (cytotoxic experiment detects the reaction between recipient's blood serum and donor's lymphocytes); rate of transformation of lymphocytes (incubate the mixture of lymphocytes) must be lower than 20% (this experiment requires five to six days to yield results and the use of the result is limited); HLA system match (histocompatibility) (international guidelines require to test both the donor and recipient's HLA-A,HLA-B,HLA-C,HLA-DP,HLA-DQ,and HLA-DR six points) is the most important factor that affect the potency of the transplanted organ. HLAs have many alleles; therefore, the variability of the HLA is extremely high. It's almost impossible to find those with identical HLA among people who are not related by blood. However, even with that, in the US to find a "less perfect" donor for a kidney takes about 2-3 years, and often even longer.
It is hard to imagine that it only takes a week to find a matching kidney in China. It would be impossible without a huge number of donors. The donor's medical makeup has to be identified first. Then once the matching organ is found, a cross match will have to be performed between the donor and recipient.
R: The doctors in Shenyang said that the kidneys came from death row prisoners, and are living organs; they also said that the donation was voluntary. What do you think?
F: Death row prisoner are in a disadvantaged position. Even though they said that they were willing, it might not be their true wish. Even though the judiciary staff did not coerce or lure them into doing this, due to their legal position, you cannot assume that they were willing.
I have heard that the Chinese regime uses all kinds of brutal means to force the inmates to sign the paper donating their organs. They go as far as hanging them upside down for an extended period of time so they will neither live nor die. Even if they did sign a paper, we cannot say that it was done voluntarily.
Also, Chinese people strongly believe that the integrity of the body should be maintained. Basically, an average Chinese is not willing to donate organs after they die.
R: According to reports, the failure and death rate of kidney transplants in China are higher than usual. Can you explain why?
F: Let me use the case of Wang Nianwen's kidney transplant and death at Guangdong Province Yanling Hospital to analyze the possible cause of his death and the factors behind it. In Mr. Wang's patient kidney match record, several test results are missing. One is the lymphocytes toxicology study between the donor (the one who provides the kidney) and the recipient (the one who receive the kidney).
In Mr. Wang's report, there is a PRA record. PRA is often used as the guideline to decide the recipient's (the one who receives the organ) immunity predicament -- the higher the PRA, the higher the chance of having a rejection. The detailed process is that before the transplant, do a cross conjugation test of mixing the recipient's blood serum with more than twenty healthy unrelated individual's lymphocytes. However, PRA cannot replace the lymphocytes toxicology cross conjugation study between the donor (the one who provides the kidney) and the recipient (the one who receive the kidney). This test is called Test Tube Transplant. The purpose of this test is to observe whether the recipient will reject the donor's kidney. It takes 4-5 hours to complete the test. If the recipient's cells kill the cell of the donor's, most likely the recipient will reject the kidney. This is a necessary conventional test before the actual transplant. However, the test was missing from Wang's medical file.
Wang's situation worsened. The third ultrasound diagnosed acute tubular necrosis, which is a complication after kidney transplant. It may have to do with whether or not the surgery and post-surgery care were done properly. It may also have to do with the state of the donor's kidney before surgery. When a person experiences physiological and psychological trauma and attacks, his body will release large amount of catecholamine. For instance, severe head trauma can cause catecholamine to be stored, and the result is permanent physiological damage to the organ. In the kidney, this would manifest as acute tubular necrosis. In fact, sometimes a damaged kidney has worse postoperative results than a kidney with unmatching HLA. Based on clinical evidence, not very favorable HLA matching between husband and wife has better results than that of favorable HLA of a damaged cadaveric (from a dead body) kidneys (for instance, tubular necrosis).
We hear of more and more cases of deaths because of unidentified organ sources in China. In Taiwan, there are 40,000 dialysis patients, many of whom went to China to have a kidney transplant. For instance, in Changhua county, many residents went to China to have a kidney transplant. The patients survived the transplant operation, but did not become healthy. Death came earlier than would have been the case without transplant. The reason could be due to problems with the medical technology. However, the physiological state of the kidney is also important. As most of the organs came from Falun Gong practitioners and those on death row, who have been tortured for a long time, their organs may have sustained permanent injuries.
R: The Chinese regime has denied harvesting organs from death row prisoners for a long time. However, it is no longer a secret. Huang Jiefu, the associate minister of the Public Health Ministry admitted to the fact publicly last December. What does this mean?
F: This only suggests that the regime has no psychological barriers when it comes to illegally stealing living organs.
R: Many people find it hard to believe this.
F: It is not hard to imagine that Falun Gong practitioners have become victims of the large scale persecution. In the past seven years of brutal persecution, the Chinese media has deceived many people. The sense of fear numbs their conscience in the face of the atrocities of the regime. Many Falun Gong practitioners became homeless, were missing and lost their identity.
The authorities cannot even harvest death row prisoners' organs and cremate them at will. But they can do this to Falun Gong practitioners.
Whether or not the public believes this or not, I hope all people will not turn a blind eye to this bloody brutality.
Can memories and mind be transplanted with the organs?
R: A few days ago, I read an article about a heart transplant recipient's dream. He/she dreamt about the culprit who murdered the donor. Do you think one's memory and personality can be transferred to another person?
F: Research as to whether or not cells have memories and whether or not organ transplants can result in the transplanting of consciousness and memories is still in its infancy. Due to the limitations of empirical science, we have no means to prove the existence or lack of existence of the phenomena at this time, although there are many examples already.
In 1988, Claire Sylvia, a ballet dancer, became the first recipient of a successful heart and lung transplant operation at New Haven Hospital in Yale University. However, her personality changed drastically - she now has a dual personality.
The doctor told Claire that the donor died of a motorcycle accident in Maine. Claire dreamed about and saw when she was awake a young man dying from a motorcycle accident. The initials of T.L kept appearing in front of her and she knew that this was her donor. When Claire told her doctor about this, the doctor said that the heart is just a pump for blood and the lungs are organs for exchanging air. They had nothing to do with consciousness and memories.
As time went by and after continuous nightmares, Clair found out that the donor of her heart was an 18-year-old man by the name of Tim Lasalle. In the end, the dual personalities and the motorcycle accidents kept bothering her until she could not function any longer normally. The doctors ignored her questions. So she decided to search for answers on her own.
Finally, accompanied by Robert Bosnak, she visited Tim's parents and confirmed her suspicions. Her other personality came from her donor, Tim Lasalle. Clair wrote a book entitled a Change of Heart. In 2002, a TV series named Heart of a Stranger was made based on the book, starring Jane Seymour.
In 2003, at the Discovery Health Channel, organ transplants were also discussed. One of examples mentioned was that of a 7-year-old girl who had suffered from acute heart disease. She was given a heart donated by a 10-year old girl who was brutally murdered. She had nightmares of being murdered. What was shocking was that based on her detailed descriptions of the murderer, the police caught the culprit.
R: Can psychological pressure cause changes in DNA? Do inmates' organs undergo DNA changes that increase the chance of rejection as a result of imprisonment or psychological pressure or the effect of torture or persecution? In other words, can the organs of the inmates be transplanted as normal or healthy organs?
F: It has been proven that psychological pressure can cause changes in DNA. For instance, BDNF, genes that generate nerve cells may be methylated and not getting sufficient nourishment because of psychological pressure. In addition, psychological pressure can increase the speed of shortening telemares on ends of chromosomes, which results in unstable DNA. The result is that the lifetimes of cells and organs would be shortened. Donors who have experienced psychological pressure are considered not suitable. In the short run, the recipient may experience slight improvement after the organ transplants. However, the consequences are also grave.
Whether the organs of inmates on death row or not may experience DNA changes as a result of psychological pressure has not been proven. If changes happened, which cannot be solved by way of matching, it is dangerous for the recipient. The change of DNA can be the direct or indirect cause for chronic rejections.
I have a colleague who is researching kidney transplants. She found that even between relatives, if the donors were reluctant to have their organ removed, the possibility of a successful transplant would be decreased. Some kidney specialists in the U.S. found it was more difficult to provide post-surgery care to patients who had received a kidney transplant in China. It is difficult to find documents in this regard because from the point of view of modern medical science, organs are special tissues and groups of cells that have special functions. Even though some people have psychological issues, they will be neglected and ignored. When the transplanted organs have problems, they are generally treated as chronic rejections.
In fact, those who have experienced psychological pressure tend to have damage to their nervous system, which controls all of the organs. Currently, it has been proven that problems in the nervous system are related to unhealthiness of the organs. From this point of view, it is questionable whether death row prisoners can be used for healthy and normal organ transplant.
I have done some research on the genomic sequence of cultivators and non-cultivators. Compared to non-cultivators, cultivators have a considerable amount of genetic activation and disappearance; those changes may appear as genetic differentiation. These kinds of changes are part of the overall changes of the donor's body; they are positive changes that correspond to the whole body. However, they may not be beneficial to the recipient. For instance, some donor's organs have a high activation of genes. Since those genes are not activated or activated at a low level in the recipient, the recipient might develop autoimmunity from the transplant because the recipient's body may recognize the new organ as an antigen. Modern science is not advanced enough yet to resolve these issues.