A semi-centennial report on the participants depicted in Joel Babb's portrait, 'the first successful kidney transplantation'

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Anesthesiology



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

History, 20th Century; Humans; Kidney Transplantation; *Paintings; United States


History of Science, Technology, and Medicine


Joseph Murray performed the first successful human kidney transplant on December 23, 1954. Forty-three years later, he along with participants Francis Moore and Leroy Vandam, commissioned a painting of the event from artist Joel Babb. To document this unique record of medical history, we identify all those present at the operation and depicted in the portrait, describe how the artist created the work, explain irregularities and inaccuracies in the painting, provide a 50-year follow-up on everyone involved, and comment on any influence this landmark event may have had on their subsequent careers.


Citation: Desai, S. P., Desai, M. S., Wood, D. N., Maddi, R., Leeson, S. and Tilney, N. L. (2007), A Semi-Centennial Report on the Participants Depicted in Joel Babb's Portrait, ‘The First Successful Kidney Transplantation'. American Journal of Transplantation, 7: 1683–1688. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-6143.2007.01861.x. Link to article on publisher's site

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