Since 1971 and the opening of Lexington County Hospital (now LMC) in West Columbia, S. C., our pathology group has been an intermediary
for a number various types of tissue donations. Here are examples
of those and many other tissue activities and links for your information. Be aware that policies in any of the following organizations are likely to change over time. This page is basically intended to give you an idea of what all might be possible. Here is the website of a leading USA agency, UNOS
- Blood: it is so very compassionate & altruistic to freely donate blood & blood components...if you can afford to.
- transfusions: living-person blood, plasma,
and platelet "liquid transplant" donations (ARC, AABB)
- umbilical cord blood for stem cells (must
be obtained at birth):
- Unused Autologous Donor blood at LMC
is held until used or outdates
- Unused hemochromatosis registry phlebotomies
at LMC are discarded
- Donations for genetic research in such
- Plasma/serum with adequate proteins and/or high antibody
levels of particular medical value, induced or naturally...
- Donated for free in blood donor programs such as ARC.
- For personal sale (in 2016, possibly $200-$400 per person per month) at commercial serological
companies (a Coumbia, S. C. example, CSL Plasma; more general info, check HERE). Serologicals, Inc. used to be in Columbia but is no longer. My long-deceased uncle (his story) was one of the first in S. C. to be saved by specific-infection-survivor plasma prior to antibiotic therapy!!!
- Fecal (feces) Microbial Transplant (FMT): FMT may be needed when infectious enteritis appears after antibiotic disruption of fecal bacterial diversity (deficient in Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes, both of which generally dominate within the normal & stable gut microbiota). The first FMT @ LMC was performed by Dr. Emilio Perez-Jorge on 4/24/2014. This is the in-hospital transfer of a good mixture of large intestine bacteria to the living, sick individual. After bad "C. difficile" colitis became such a post 2000 problem, the idea of fecal transplant from the healthy donor to the very sick patient took hold (Wikipedia). It is now being tentatively used to treat certain persons with inflammatory bowel (IBD) disease and obese people with the "metabolic syndrome" (Medscape review). It is the ONLY transplant that a person might self administer (this is not advised because the donor will not have been tested for diseases)! A lay resource (The Power of Poop); even a YouTube video, HERE. A nonprofit donor bank, Openbiome, now (2016) is the source of fecal specimens used @ LMC by Lexington Medical Specialists in West Columbia, S. C. That same source also can supply capsules to physicians. This fecal transplant topic also relates to the whole issue of "probiotics" (see that topic in various files on Consumers Reports).
- Whole body (after death):
- For S. C. medical schools, medical school Willed Body Program:
bodies used for anatomy teaching; and, in some programs, some
parts possibly afterwards used for surgical instruction.
Biology & Anatomy Dept., USC School
of Med, Columbia, SC, Lisa Buchanan, 803-733-3369.
Biology & Anatomy Dept., MUSC School
of Med., Charleston, SC, Dr. Litke,843-792-3521 [will not accept next-of-kin-authorized donations].
- Postmortem parts (after
- Transplantable still-living tissues:
843-763-7755 [has now become Lifepoint, see
Lions Club, West Columbia, SC 803-796-1304
- Sperm is rarely obtained in a case
of sudden unexpected death for in-vivo fertilization
of the new widow [A-00-17]
- Lifepoint: a
federally designated S. C. organ procurement
organization (OPO), & I know one of their
family support counselors (formerly SCOPA). 800-462-0755;
843-763-7755 (FAX 843-763-6393) 4200 Faber Place
Dr., Charleston, S. C. 29405
- Transplantable processed
cadaver tissues (skin, fascia, bone, joints):
- ARC: American
- CryoLife: Georgia firm
is largest processor of human tissue for use in living
- Research tissues:
U., brains for Alzheimer's [FA-87-345;
VAL-18; A-87-813; A-90-888; BB-92-28 & 29; BB97-30]
U., "Harvard Brain Tissue
Resource Center," McLean Hospital [B99-4636; B93-2681]: many types of neurological disorders, including
restless legs syndrome (RLS
- UNC Chapel Hill, ALS spinal cord studies
919-966-1199 (an 8/02 case)
- Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) brain donation processing @ Mayo Clinic Jacksonville [this has also proven to be an excellent service for us to use when families want a brain harvested for a specific dementia diagnosis at death].
Autism Tissue Program (brain)
- NIH (brains in Parkinson's disease (1981)
- National Diabetes Research Interchange,
Philadelphia, Pa. (eyes)
- Tissues for test
- Pituitary glands from autopsies for growth
hormone production to National Pituitary Agency in
Boston [no longer as of <1990]
- Spleen of sarcoid patients for Kveim
antigen production to Alvin S. Teirstein, Mt. Sinai
Medical Center in NY, NY. (NEJM 292:859-60, 1975) [LMC-80-3357; A-80-549; LMC-81-1849; FA-84-111] [no longer as of
- Medical School teaching
- Bagged demonstration specimens
- Mounted museum specimens
- lasticized teaching specimens
- Surgical specimens:
- autologous (for self re-implantation):
- parathyroid (renal hyperparathyroid cases)
- accidentally amputated parts
- homologous (for donation to kinfolk, friend, stranger): bone marrow,
kidney, part of liver.
- tissue pieces for in-lab quality control of special
- tumor tissue for homologous vaccine production
(we sent a few cases) to Ariel Hollinshead, PhD,
George Washington U. Med. Ctr., Wash., D. C. (up
to about 1990)
- Cat-scratch lymph node for production
of Hanger-Rose skin test antigen (we sent a few
cases): Southwest Foundation for Research & Education,
San Antonio, Tex. (Ann. Int. Med. 55:903-10,
1961; Int. J. Dermatology 17:656-658, 1978) [no
longer as of 1987]
- Parathyroid adenoma tissue to Laboratory
Procedures, Inc., Kalamazoo, Mich. (F. P. Biella,
PhD.) to produce anti-PTH test reagent [no longer
as of about 1984]
- At our hospital, from 1971-about 1980, placentae were used for component extraction
(the hospital usually kept them frozen in Labor & Delivery [L&D] and
value paid to hospital about $0.25 per case)
- Phamaceutical firms: extract
hormones, chemicals, proteins, gamma
globulin (such as Merieux Institut in
- Residue is called "placental extract" and
used by cosmetics companies (valued at
$3000-4000/pound in 1982)
- Amnion membranes have been used
to cover burns
- Umbilical cords have been used
to obtain umbilical arteries for artery bypass
surgery since 1982
- Frozen cord blood storage for
preserving stem cells
- Research tissue:
800-292-9537 "live-organ" donations...you
might turn out to be a "match" for someone
in your church, for example
pre-planned research protocols
Biosciences Human Tissue Bank
- Local GI & prostate efforts
with USC medical school researchers (Dr.
Fowke; Dr. Bostic) in Columbia.
- The S. C. Biorepository System: hospital surgical pathology areas co-operating to quickly freeze tumor tissue for donation to this program to support molecular research on tumors [we began July 2007 with L07-5971].
- Miscellaneous notes:
- For your information, xenografts are tissues from another
animal used in humans.
- Some have attempted collaboration with Coroner & Medical Examiner offices. We attempted a groundbreaking program about 1995 but got no support; but our hospital & coroner have had good co-operation on certain deaths pronounced actually within the hospital (as in the ER). A link to a national PDF study on such cooperation is posted HERE.
Feb 2002; latest addition 24 May 2009 & 27 March 2015 & 10 May 2016)