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Alessio Fasano, MD

Chief, Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition

Associate Chief, Department of Pediatrics, Basic, Clinical and Translational Research

Director, Center for Celiac Research

Dr. Fasano sees pediatric and adult patients at the Center for Celiac Research and Treatment.

Department of Pediatrics


  • MassGeneral Hospital for Children
  • Gastroenterology & Nutrition
Clinical Interests
Celiac disease
Gluten-related disorders
Non-celiac gluten sensitivity
Dermatitis herpetiformis
Wheat allergy
Gluten ataxia
Boston: Massachusetts General Hospital
Medical Education
MD, University of Naples School of Medicine
Residency, University of Naples School of Medicine
Foreign Languages
Patient Age Group
Adult and pediatric
Accepting New Patients
Accepting New Patients


World-renowned pediatric gastroenterologist, research scientist and entreprenuer Dr. Alessio Fasano is chief of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition at MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC). Dr. Fasano directs the Center for Celiac Research, specializing in the treatment of patients of all ages with gluten-related disorders, including celiac disease, wheat allergy and gluten sensitivity. He treats patients with acute and chronic diarrheal diseases, and treats infants and children who have difficult-to-treat gastrointestinal problems.

Dr. Fasano also directs the Mucosal Immunology and Biology Research Center and is associate chief for Basic, Clinical and Translational Research. Under his leadership, investigators are studying the molecular mechanisms of autoimmune disorders including celiac disease, and other-gluten-related disorders. He has been named visiting professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. He authored the groundbreaking study in 2003 that established the rate of celiac disease at one in 133 Americans. Widely sought after by national and international media, Dr. Fasano has been featured in hundreds of interviews including outlets such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal; National Public Radio; CNN; Bloomberg News, and others.


Dr. Fasano is director of the Mucosal Immunology and Biology Research Center at MassGeneral Hospital for Children. Dr. Fasano's research established that celiac disease affects approximately 1 percent of the U.S. population, a significantly higher number than previously believed, and helped define gluten sensitivity as a condition on the spectrum of gluten-related disorders. His research also uncovered the role that impairment of the tight junctions between intestinal enterocytes plays in the development of celiac disease.

During research designed to develop a cholera vaccine, Dr. Fasano uncovered a toxin, zonula occludens, which causes diarrhea by loosening the tight junctions and allowing intestinal permeability. Subsequently, he identified the protein zonulin, which controls this process. He has since established the role of zonulin in the pathogenesis of a number of autoimmune diseases, including celiac disease, type 1 diabetes, and certain cancers and diseases of the nervous system.

Make Gluten-Free Food Safe for Patients and Consumers

Calling for action on the final steps before implementation of safe gluten-free labeling regulations, Dr. Alessio Fasano joined Rep. Nita Lowey (D-NY) in an Op-Ed published in the Huffington Post Healthy Living section on April 3.

Expanding the Spectrum of Gluten-Related Disorders

Transcending the disciplines of microbiology, molecular and cell biology, and physiology, Dr. Alessio Fasano’s research focuses on the mucosal biology of the gut. By focusing on the “cross talk” between enteric pathogens and their hosts, Dr. Fasano’s group has elucidated various organs and cell functions involved in health and disease, including inflammatory and autoimmune disorders.

Gluten-Free Diet Myths Examined in HuffPo

Dr. Alessio Fasano, director of the Center for Celiac Research at MassGeneral Hospital for Children, separates the myths from the realities about the gluten-free diet in this video with Huffington Post science editor Jacqueline Howard.

FDA sets new labeling regulations for gluten-free foods

In a long-awaited step toward accurate gluten-free food labeling, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has released its definition of “gluten free” to be used by food manufacturers.

Celiac Program at Harvard Medical School

People with celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders soon will have something to celebrate with the recent launch of the Celiac Program at Harvard Medical School. Advancing basic and clinical research is the main goal of the partnership of experts in celiac care from Massachusetts General Hospital, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Boston Children’s Hospital, along with collaboration in clinical and training initiatives.

Dr. Fasano Featured on MSNBC Talk on Leaky Gut and Painkillers

Overuse of popular NSAIDs is associated with intestinal permeability, which is a condition associated with celiac disease and other autoimmune disorders. Dr. Alessio Fasano, director of the Center for Celiac Research at MassGeneral Hospital for Children, discusses the implications of using popular pain medication in relation to gluten-related disorders and exercise.

Clearing Up Confusion About Following a Gluten-Free Diet

In this news segment with Dr. Mallika Marshall from WBZ-TV Boston, Dr. Alessio Fasano, joined by patient Sharone Jelden, talks about diagnosis and treatment for celiac disease and who benefits from following a gluten-free diet.

Studying celiac’s infancy

Maureen Leonard, MD, is looking for 500 newborns at risk for celiac disease. The third-year Mass General Hospital for Children (MGHfC) Pediatric Gastroenterology fellow is working with Alessio Fasano, MD, director of the Center for Celiac Research and division chief of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition at MGHfC.

FDA Implements Safety Standards for Gluten-Free Labeling

Celiac patients and other consumers trying to sort the gluten-free from the gluten-filled, will have an easier time after August 5, when the FDA standards for gluten-free labeling go into effect.

Frontiers in Pediatrics Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition 2013

This course is designed to meet one or more of the following Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education competencies: Patient care; Medical knowledge; Practice-based learning and improvement; Interpersonal and communication skills; Professionalism; Systems-based practice

FDA Sets New Food Safety Regulations for Gluten-Free Foods

The FDA has released its definition of "gluten free" to be used by food manufacturers. The long-awaited regulations stem from research conducted by the Center for Celiac Research.

Delayed introduction to gluten appears not to prevent celiac disease in at-risk infants

An study led by investigators at the MGHfC Center for Celiac Research and Treatment finds that neither breastfeeding nor delaying the introduction of gluten-containing foods prevents or delays the development of celiac disease in at-risk children.

Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114-2696

Phone: 617-726-8705
Fax: 617-724-2710

Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114-2696

Phone: 617-726-8705
Fax: 617-724-2710


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