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Every day in the US, approximately 34 patients are removed from the transplant waiting list either because they die or they become too sick to receive a transplant.

Our mission is to bring that number down to zero by developing innovative technology and services that will extend the safe preservation times for unused kidneys.

How it Works:

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We work with OPOs and transplant surgeons to identify and rescue kidneys that would otherwise be unused.

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We keep kidneys alive and healthy with a warm Normothermic preservation, thus extending the time out of body.

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We provide a detailed assessment and additional data on each kidney leading to more informed decision making.

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About Us

The 34 Lives Leadership Team represents a combined 100+ years of experience in the fields of transplantation, healthcare, policy and technology.

CEO Chris Jaynes developed the equipment and technology for ex-vivo or out-of-body lung assessment and is using his background and previous successes to also improve kidney transplantation.

CCO and Co-founder Kathleen St. Jean built a 30-year career at Merck & Co., Inc., with a number of leadership roles in Sales, Professional Learning & Development and Customer Strategy.

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“Kathleen and I decided to combine our careers in healthcare and transplantation to help solve the organ transplant crisis in the US. We founded 34 Lives as a Public Benefit Company (PBC) and will not rest until we have forged a new path in ensuring that every donated kidney possible is rescued, revived and transplanted.”

- Chris Jaynes

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34 Lives Transforms the Kidney Transplantation Process

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What problem are we solving?

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In 2022, approximately 115,000 patients in the US were awaiting organ transplants. Of these, 96,000 were waiting for a kidney.

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The average wait time for a kidney is 6 years, and during this time most patients will be on dialysis.

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In 2022, over 7,800 kidneys were recovered with the intent to be transplanted but were unused.

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In 2021, only 18,699 patients (18%) received kidney transplants while 13,292, approximately 34 per day, either died or became too sick to remain on the wait list.

who are we

Meet the Team

Chris Jaynes

Chris Jaynes

Chris has spent his 30-year career disrupting services and products in medical device niche markets. He founded 34 Lives in 2021, backed by a Kidney X Award from the US Department of Health & Human Services, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid, and the National Kidney Foundation.

Kathleen St. Jean
Chief Commercial Officer

Kathleen St. Jean

Kathleen’s career in Big Pharma spanned sales, training, and customer strategy, where she was well known for her passion and creativity. After stints at Imedex and SeaStar Medical, she co-founded 34 Lives and is CCO.

Henri Leuvenink
Chief Scientific Officer

Henri Leuvenink

tom taccini
SVP Quality & Engineering

Tom Taccini

Tom brings over 34 years of Engineering Product Development and Quality/Regulatory experience to the 34 Lives Executive Team. He is a Patent Holder and won the 2011 NASA Medical Device of the Year. Tom developed the technology for out of body lung perfusion and has managed numerous initiatives in the organ preservation and transplantation field.

Stephen G. Ruby
Lab Director

Stephen G. Ruby

Dr. Ruby is a Board Certified Anatomic and Clinical Pathologist who leverages over 40 years of laboratory, medical and business experience as the new Lab Director at 34 Lives.

Melissa Greenwald
Chief Medical Officer

Melissa Greenwald

Melissa’s career experiences include overseeing national government programs and policy development for clinical safety in the use of organs, tissues, cells and blood products. She has worked extensively with transplantation and transfusion stakeholder communities.

Devon Adams
Director of Finance

Devon Adams

For 15+ years, Devon has created financial structures, protocols and procedures for flourishing startups. Devon is an expert in multiple Business Implementation and Financial Software Platforms, specializing in niche biotech startups.

Molly Russin
Director of Communications

Molly Russin

Molly began her career as an advertising copywriter and transitioned to the pharmaceutical industry with Merck where she held a variety of roles over 20 years, including employee communication, promotion, culture and strategy.

Meet Our Preservationists

Alison DeWitt

Alison DeWitt

With a solid foundation as a CSFA, Alison DeWitt eagerly embraced the opportunity to explore the intricacies of organ preservation, motivated by a desire to play a pivotal role in the journey of organ transplantation and improve the quality of life for transplant recipients. Alison is driven by a passion for prioritizing the patients and saving lives through the advancement of 34 Lives.
Heidi Finfrock

Heidi Finfrock

Since earning her CSFA certification in 2007, Heidi has showcased her knowledge and versatility across various surgical settings, specializing in General, Peripheral Vascular, and Cardiothoracic Surgeries. Her compassionate approach, expertise, and adaptability have been instrumental to her transition into organ preservation.
Kim Fleischauer

Kim Fleischhauer

Kim has over three decades of experience as a Surgical Technologist/Surgical First Assistant. She has teamed with esteemed Neurosurgeons and Orthopedic Surgeons in both the hospital and ambulatory surgery setting and prides herself on her precision and dedication to patient care.
Lindsay Frodge

Lindsey Frodge

With a decade of proficiency in surgical nursing across various specialties, Lindsey is able to leverage her background in the operating room, as well as her deep knowledge of liver and kidney transplantation surgery.
haley fost

Haley Frost

Haley’s career began as a Certified Tissue Banking Specialist with Indiana’s Organ Procurement Organization, to support and facilitate donor families with the gift of organ and tissue donation. With 34 Lives, she has transitioned her focus to the critical task of honoring the legacy of donors by rescuing unallocated organs for those in need of life-saving transplants.
Morgan Hudson

Morgan Hudson

Morgan is a dedicated CST with 6 years of experience with knowledge in various surgical procedures and sterile technique. Morgan seamlessly embarked on a new career path of transitioning into the field of organ preservation, driven by her commitment to enhance patient outcomes and saving lives through innovated organ preservation techniques. 
grace little

Grace Little

As a recent Certified Surgical Technologist graduate, Grace’s passion and dedication to healthcare led her to join 34 Lives as a kidney preservationist. She proudly brings her skills and an unwavering commitment to ensure successful preservation of kidneys for those in need of life-saving transplants.
ryan phelan

Ryan Phelan

Ryan has over a decade of experience in organ transplant, the majority of which have been dedicated to kidney preservation. In addition to proudly working with the team of Preservationists at 34 Lives, he works at the University of Chicago in cardiothoracic transplants.
Dan Ricks

Dan Ricks

Dan is a board certified Cardiovascular Perfusionist and ECMO specialist with 30 years of experience.  In addition to working at 34 Lives, he is the Statewide Perfusion Manager at Indiana University Health.
Tyler Sherman

Tyler Sherman

Tyler is a preservationist for 34 Lives. Before joining 34 Lives in 2023 he was a Cardiothoracic surgery Assistant and specialized in endoscopic saphenous vein harvesting and preparation.
alison smith

Allison Smith

Allison began her career as an RN on an abdominal transplant team. Allison worked at Indiana Donor Network, an OPO, where she was a surgical recovery specialist and organ import coordinator. She has broadened her experience by helping nursing students in clinical settings as well as in the simulation lab setting.
Dusti Trent

Dusti Trent

Dusti is a proud advocate for healthcare and education with over 21 years of experience as a Certified Surgical Technologist. She is dedicated to making a difference every day and finds fulfillment in sharing her expertise with aspiring medical professionals, teaching them the intricacies of surgical technology and patient care.

Jessica Weldon

Jessica is a Certified Surgical Technologist (CST). She is proud to have joined the 34 Lives team, dedicating herself to enhancing patient welfare and driven by a profound commitment to positively impacting the lives of donors, patients and their families


We named our company 34 Lives because every day in the US, approximately 34 patients are removed from the transplant waiting list either because they die or they become too sick to receive a transplant.

34 Lives is more than our name: It’s our mission, our passion, our reason for being! We will work tirelessly with other dedicated collaborators and stakeholders to bring the number 34 down to 0.

34 Lives is proud to boast a Leadership Team with a combined 100+ years of experience in the fields of transplantation, healthcare, policy and technology.

CEO Chris Jaynes developed the equipment and technology for ex-vivo or out-of-body lung assessment and is using his background and previous successes to improve kidney transplantation.

Co-founder and CCO Kathleen St. Jean was at Merck & Co., Inc., for 29 years in several leadership roles, including Sales, Professional Learning & Development, customer Strategy and more. In Phase Two of her career, Kathleen worked at Imedex before joining Chris at SeaStar Medical.

Working with a team of seasoned professionals, Chris and Kathleen are committed to honoring each and every organ, each and every donor each and every recipient. The team’s aspiration is to change “Wait Lists” into “Life Lists.”

34 Lives is committed to saving and dramatically improving the lives of the more than 96,000 individuals waiting for lifesaving kidney transplant in the US.

We’re working to develop innovative technology and services that will extend the safe preservation times to rescue the thousands of unused kidneys each year, saving lives that would otherwise be lost on the waitlist.

Keeping a kidney viable for transplant is a race against the clock. In the US, it’s accepted practice to not keep a kidney out of the body for longer than 20 hours to be viable for transplant. We are working to safely double kidney preservation times through our process, thus giving unused kidneys “a second chance” and extra time to make it to a waiting patient.

PBCs are a type of for-profit corporate entity currently authorized by 35 states and the District of Columbia, similar to a C-corp, S-corp, or LLC.

A PBC must prepare an annual benefit report with (1) a description of how the company promoted the public benefits listed in the company’s articles of incorporation and any obstacles the company faced in promoting those public benefits and (2) an assessment of the overall social and environmental performance of the company against a third-party standard.

PBCs must include in their charter one or more specific public benefits as their statement of purpose, which provides for a North Star by which a company can navigate critical business decisions. 34 Lives Statement of Purpose is:

  • To save and dramatically improve the lives of critically ill patients as they await organ transplant by providing innovative solutions to rescue donor organ function and improve the chances of a recipient to receive a transplant

We are proud to partner with leading research organizations and universities:

  • Purdue Research Foundation, West Lafayette, Indiana, where the 34 Lives team is located
  • National Kidney Foundation (NKF), which awarded an Innovation Fund investment to 34 Lives in 2022

34 Lives is currently working on a number of research protocols with organ transplant experts from other countries, including:

  • Dr. Anna Krarup Keller, Aarhus University, Denmark
  • Professor Henri Leuvenink, University Medical Center Groningen, Netherlands
  • Dr. Cyril Moers, University Medical Center Groningen, Netherlands