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Muslim doctor behind pig heart transplant draws criticism from family

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On January 7, Muhammad Mansoor Mohiuddin, an American doctor based in Pakistan, made headlines as the co-founder of Maryland Medical Center in the United States, which successfully transplanted a genetically modified pig’s heart into a phased American. terminal. While the Muslim doctor was hailed by his fellowship for the medical breakthrough, he received harsh backlash from his own family members because he used an organ from an animal banned by Islam.

Speaking to Vice, a Canadian-American magazine, Dr. Muhammad Mohiuddin, director of cardiac xenotransplantation at the University of Maryland Medical Center noted: “I had a lot of negative reactions from my family.”

“Why do you use this animal? My dad always asked me, the doctor said, adding that his dad kept asking “Can you at least try using another animal?”

‘My mom used to gargle me even though I just said so’, Pakistan-based American doctor behind pig heart transplant reveals

The doctor further explained that in his family the word “pig” was taboo and he would be punished for just saying it. “My mom used to make me gargle,” he revealed, adding, “It was a big no-no in my family. It was forbidden in our house.

He explained how his family’s concerns, as well as his personal faith, led him to be questioned using a pig’s organ for surgery.

“I try to follow all the tenets of Islam, so this worry was on my mind all the time. So, I was trying to come up with a reasoning for me to continue using this animal,” Mohiuddin said.

“As I live in a country where pork is eaten regularly, it was not an ethical issue here in the western world. It was easier,” added Dr Muhammad Mansoor Mohiuddin.

The latest treatment, led by Mohiuddin and Bartley P. Griffith, director of the center’s heart transplant program, used a genetically modified pig’s heart provided by Swedish biotech company Revivicor, along with a rare immunosuppressive drug. The heart was donated to a 57-year-old man who is currently recovering.

The transplant has opened up life-saving opportunities for thousands of people on national organ transplant rosters in the United States, who are experiencing an extreme organ shortage crisis.

“Almost 150,000 people lose their lives every year in the United States alone, you can calculate how many more lose their lives around the world just because organs are not available,” Mohiuddin said, adding, “ If this technique succeeds, we will be able to save almost all of them.

Muslims are concerned about whether Covid-19 vaccines are halal as they may contain pork products

It may be recalled that in 2020, Muslim countries around the world are concerned about coronavirus vaccines, as gelatin derived from pork is widely used as a stabilizer in vaccines to ensure that they remain safe and effective during storage and transportation. Although spokespersons for Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca have said pork products are not an ingredient in their coronavirus vaccines, Sunni Muslim scholars from Raza Academy in Mumbai and All India Sunni Jamiyyathul Ulama issued a fatwa against the Chinese vaccine that contains pork gelatin.

The Raza Academy researchers had claimed that the vaccine’s pork gelatin component makes it “haram” for the Muslim community. Some reports have claimed that the Chinese vaccine contains the said component which has sparked controversy in the Muslim community around the world.

Aversion to vaccines by the Muslim community because of their “haram” nature or containing pork products is not a new phenomenon. In 2018, Indonesia’s Ulema Council, the country’s highest clerical body that issues halal certificates, declared measles and rubella vaccines “haram” due to pork-derived gelatin.