Four patients have undergone heterotopic heart transplantation with donor hearts stored by a portable hypothermic perfusion system. Total ischemic periods ranged from 6 hours 55 minutes to 16 hours 50 minutes. One heart, transplanted into a patient who had acutely rejected a previous graft, suffered accelerated, irreversible, acute rejection within five days, associated with strong antibody formation; donor heart function was never good. In the 3 remaining patients, donor heart function was good after initially being poor for a few hours in 2 patients. One patient died of long-term rejection after 6 months and 1 of tuberculous meningitis after 10 months; 1 remains alive at 15 months. Neither preservation of the donor heart for periods in excess of approximately 4 hours nor the use of continuous hypothermic perfusion as a method of preservation appears to have been reported previously in the context of the clinical situation. © 1984, The Society of Thoracic Surgeons. All rights reserved.