The science and art of transplantation:
a pop-up exhibition and the future of transplantation, a debate hosted by jonathan dimbleby

On the 20th June, the MRC Centre for Transplantation celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Medical Research Council with a unique, interactive pop-up exhibition, The Science and Art of Transplantation. One of 60 events that took place up and down the country as part of Open Week, the Centre open day showcased some of the many life-changing discoveries of the MRC over the last 100 years and the fascinating research taking place within the Centre. Just some of the exhibits open to the public included exclusive interviews from pioneers of transplantation, connecting MRC discoveries with the treatment of transplant patients today, a holographic model, multi-player video game, and real-life kidney perfusion video. Visitors were able to hear first-hand about life as a transplant donor or recipient, as well as speak to our researchers about their life-saving work.

In the evening, a packed lecture theatre was treated to a debate on The Future of Transplantation, hosted by Jonathan Dimbleby. Following a welcome from the Principal, a lively and entertaining discussion explored a range of topics from the payment of donors to growing or even printing organs, drawing on law and ethics to ask not just whether these things are possible, but should they be? Is it possible to transplant a human brain? Would the features of the transplanted brain become part of the transplantee? Watch the full footage in our media library to find out! You can also see the videos and other centenary footage on the Medical Research Council's YouTube Channel.


Sometimes the body's organs no longer function correctly. This may be due to disease or genetic condition. Organ transplantation has been offering a solution to these problems for over 50 years. Despite this dramatic surgical solution, a significant number of challenges still exist such as the shortage of donor organs, maintaining the quality of an organ in transit and the risk of organ rejection both immediately after transplant and in the following years.

Outline of the crisis in available organs

The number of people requiring transplants has increased, increasing the demand for available organs. Unfortunately transplanted organs also have a limited life and sadly many patients who receive a transplant may end up back on the waiting list for a new organ.

How can research help

Researchers at the MRC Centre for Transplantation at King's College London are working hard to solve the problems associated with organ transplantation. The Centre brings together researchers from many fields of immunology, genetics, stem cell biology and imaging and helps them to work with clinicians to take their scientific discoveries from the bench to the bedside.

Examples of some of our research

Please visit our research pages which highlight some of the areas we are currently studying which we hope will bring benefits to patients.
Click below to view exclusive videos from the Centre's MRC Centenary celebrations plus a selection of animations demonstrating the Centre's research:
Pioneers of Transplantation
Sir Roy Calne
Sir Peter Morris
Sir Peter Medawar
Sir John Sulston
Sir John Gurdon
Herman Waldmann
Cesar Milstein
The Future of Transplantation: a debate hosted by Jonathan Dimbleby
Research in the MRC Centre for Transplantation
Kidney Perfusion
Renal Dialysis
Scientific Advancements in Organ Transplantation