Falun Gong Practitioners Systematically Murdered for Their Organs: Refuting the Chinese Regime’s “Death Row” Explanation, Chapter II

by Ouyang Fei, Sun Sixian, Lin Zhanxiang

(Clearwisdom.net) In 2006, The Epoch Times newspaper broke a stunning story about what is undoubtedly one of the most horrible atrocities to be committed by any government, not only in modern times, but in all of recorded history. As documented in the investigative report, “Bloody Harvest,” by noted human rights lawyer David Matas and former Canadian Secretary of State for the Asia-Pacific region David Kilgour, there is overwhelming evidence of the Chinese Communist regime’s chilling role in systematically murdering Falun Gong practitioners, harvesting their organs while they are alive, and making huge profits from doing so. In response to the international outcry, the Chinese regime has attempted to explain away one of the main pieces of circumstantial evidence–the meteoric rise in the number of organ transplantations in recent years and the extremely short wait times in a culture notoriously averse to organ donation–by stating that it has harvested organs from executed criminals after their deaths. Faced with undeniable evidence, it has attempted to escape culpability for a monstrous atrocity by admitting to a lesser crime. In this report, we will show evidence that directly contradicts this claim and lends further credence to the serious charges leveled against the Chinese regime.

  1. Organ matching issues

A major issue with organ transplantation is transplant rejection by the recipient. The human body’s immune system protects the body and prevents unknown objects from entering. If the object appears to be an “uninvited guest” or “enemy,” the immune system will try its best to force the object out. For example, a newly transplanted kidney can help the patient excrete waste products, but the immune system will forever recognize the transplanted kidney as foreign.

  1. Tissue matching

The purpose of tissue matching is to reduce transplant rejection. The following are some primary concerns in measuring tissue compatibility:

  1. ABO blood group type – having the same blood type is ideal. The two blood types need to at least tolerate each other and meet the requirements for a blood transfusion.
  2. Cross-match test – a test of the recipient’s serum and donor’s red cells (main test) and a test of the recipient’s red cells and donor’s serum (secondary test). Even when the blood types are the same, a cross-match test is mandatory prior to a kidney transplant. A negative test result indicates that the transplant will not be rejected.
  3. Stem cell toxicity test – for a transplant to be successful, the result of this test has to be negative. This test shows how the recipient’s serum will work with the donor’s stem cells. If the rate at which the cells are killed is below 10 percent, the result is negative; if the rate is between 10 and 15 percent, the result is a weak positive; and if the rate is over 15 percent, the result is positive.
  4. Panel Reactive Antibody (PRA) test – a method of measuring anti-human antibodies in the blood. A person’s PRA indicates the percentage of donors whose tissue can be bonded with the antibodies in the recipient’s blood.
  5. Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) matching – this identifies the types of antigens found in white blood cells and other tissues in the body. HLA antigens are the “personal identification card” of human biology. Two haplotypes, consisting of a set of three antigens each (six antigens total), make up each person’s HLA. One haplotype comes from the father and one from the mother. Therefore, the probability of two siblings having identical HLA (the same two haplotypes) is one in four. The probability of unrelated people having identical HLA is almost zero. An HLA test is used to provide evidence of tissue compatibility and performed for potential kidney, bone marrow, liver, pancreas, and heart transplants. The probability that a transplant will be successful increases with the number of identical HLA antigens.
  1. Probability of Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) matching

There are common, rare, and extremely rare types of HLA antigens. For a common HLA type, a match can be found within 300 to 500 people. The probability of finding a rare type match is one in ten thousand, and the probability of finding an extremely rare type match is one in several tens or hundreds of thousands. [12]

From a medical point of view, the probability of having two unrelated people matched to the final stage of transplantation is one in several million.

According to the National Marrow Donor Program’s website, http://www.marrow.org/, out of 4,000 volunteers, roughly 200, or 5 percent, can be potential donors, and out of 4.5 of these potential donors, only one can qualify. In other words, only 1.1 percent of the total volunteers can eventually be matched with a given recipient.

The invention and widespread use of immunosuppressive drugs have, to a certain degree, alleviated the graft rejection caused by inadequate HLA matching. Kidney transplants require matching six HLA antigens. At present, the common practice in mainland China is to match four HLA antigens. The number of matching antigens determines the probability of graft rejection and the need for medication during the late stages of transplantation. The optimum result is to have all six HLA antigens matched. According to media reports, the probability of unrelated people having four matching HLA antigens is between 20 and 30 percent. [13] The deputy director of Urology and Transplantation at the Shanghai No. 1 Hospital quoted a similar ratio during an interview withMorning News reporter Fan Yi. [14]

3. Probability of blood type matching

In China, the distribution of human ABO blood types differs among regions. The following table shows the distribution of ABO blood types in Guangdong and Beijing. [15]

Region O A B AB
Guangdong 46 25 23 6
Beijing 29 27 32 13

From this data, we can calculate the probability of identical blood type matching. For the Guangdong region, it is 33 percent, and for the Beijing region, it is 28 percent. That means that the probability of identical blood type matching among the Chinese population overall is around 30 percent.

4. Match requirements for liver transplants

From an immunological perspective, the liver is considered an “immune privileged organ,” and, therefore, unlike other organs, matching requirements between liver donor and recipient are not as strict. Ideally the donor and the recipient should have matching blood types, or at least meet the requirements for a blood transfusion, but there are no strict requirements regarding the lymphocytotoxicity test. Although HLA matching is still performed, neither the lymphocytotoxicity test nor HLA matching has any real clinical significance for liver transplants. However, there are other requirements for a potential liver donor: 1) Age – under 50. 2) Healthy liver – no liver disease; HBsAg negative; no active hepatitis; no high blood pressure, arteriosclerosis, or other diseases that might impact the quality of the liver. 3) No tuberculosis. 4) No cancer. 5) No severe infection. 6) Death did not occur long after the donor was in a coma, i.e., the donor had sufficient blood circulation in the liver prior to death. 7) Size of the liver close to, or a bit smaller than, that of the recipient.

China has a large population of hepatitis carriers. In his interview with Yangzi Evening News, Zhao Wei, vice president of the Nanjing No. 2 Hospital and a Hepatitis B expert, told the reporter that the Hepatitis B virus has a high infection rate: approximately 57.6 percent of the Chinese population has been infected at some point, and there are roughly 120 million current Hepatitis B carriers.[16] Article 31 of the “Interim Provisions of the Administration of the Clinical Applications of Human Organ Transplant Technologies” also stipulates that hepatitis carriers and other patients with infected blood cannot qualify as organ donors.

This means that, although there is no strict HLA matching requirements for liver transplants, there is still an acute shortage of liver donors due to the requirements mentioned above.

Further background information on organ transplantation is included in Appendix 1.

References

[12] Sunshine [Yangguang] Volunteers’ Association of Beijing University, Basic knowledge of HLA,http://www.isun.org/ch_cure/article_156.html

[13] Jiaozuo Daily, “Crime under the sun,” http://epaper.jzrb.com/shck/html/2009-10/19/content_139678.htm

[14] Morning News, “People’s Congress representative urges to clean up the underground kidney market,” January 14, 2004,http://www.spcsc.sh.cn/renda/node103/node124/node143/userobject1ai1562.html

[15] “Racial and Ethnic Distribution of ABO Blood Types,” http://www.bloodbook.com/world-abo.html

[16] Yangzi Evening News, “690 million infected with Hepatitis B?”http://www.hbver.com/Article/ygfz/ygzs/200404/2789.html

 

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