Addenbrooke's Hospital staff have paid tribute to pioneering transplant surgeon Sir Roy Calne, who has died at the age of 93.

Sir Roy, who died over the weekend, performed Europe's first successful liver transplant in 1998, helping establish Addenbrooke's as a famous transplant centre.

He was also responsible for introducing several of the immunosuppressive drugs used today, and received several awards and honours, including his knighthood in 1986.

Royston Crow: Transplant surgeon Sir Roy CalneTransplant surgeon Sir Roy Calne (Image: Addenbrooke's Hospital)

In June 2021, the hospital trust named its fifth floor transplant unit after him, complete with a plaque, and a book of remembrance is due to be set up in the Addenbrooke's chapel.

Retired consultant transplant surgeon Professor Chris Watson, who worked under Sir Roy as a junior doctor, said: "Sir Roy was a very talented individual with a passion to improve the outcomes for patients with organ failure.

"He was a true pioneer in the field of transplantation, and many patients are alive thanks to his work, both directly and indirectly through his discoveries.

"He will be greatly missed and our immediate thoughts are with his family and many friends."

Professor Watson and fellow consultant transport surgeon Andrew Butler welcomed Sir Roy back to Addenbrooke's on May 2, 2018 - 50 years to the day after he conducted Europe's first liver transplant.

They showed him a new liver perfusion machine that pumps a blood-based solution through the organ to preserve it, and allow its function to be tested.

Neil Russell, transplant surgery lead at Addenbrooke's, said: "I did not have the privilege to work under Sir Roy as he retired prior to me arriving in Cambridge.


"However, his legacy remains very palpable in Addenbrooke’s to this day, from the ethos and work ethic that surrounds all those working in the transplant unit named after him, to the way he is talked about within the unit and the wider hospital.

"Most importantly, however, is the effect he had on the lives of all the transplant patients he worked so tirelessly to make better.

"He is a true giant in the field of surgery and medical research and his legacy will be felt for a very long time."