Plans for a memorial service in the Bay Area were pending. JOSHUA TREE – Jeff Getty, a prominent AIDS activist who made history in 1995 when he underwent a controversial transplant of baboon bone marrow to treat the disease, has died. He was 49. Getty died Monday of heart failure, following treatment for cancer and a long struggle with AIDS, at the High Desert Medical Center in Joshua Tree, where he moved from the San Francisco Bay Area in 2002, said Ken Klueh, his partner of 26 years. Before antiviral drug combinations were used successfully by AIDS patients, Getty grabbed headlines in December 1995 for becoming the first person ever to receive a bone marrow cell transfusion from one species to another. His transplant at San Francisco General Hospital used cells taken from a baboon, with the hope that the primate’s natural AIDS resistance would take root in his own system. The procedure, ultimately unsuccessful, sparked furious debate over the moral and medical implications of cross-species transplants. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!