The CDGEMM Study enrolls infants who have a parent or sibling diagnosed with CD. The risk of developing CD for these infants is increased by 8-25% over that of the general population. Enrolled children are followed from birth until they reach five years of age.
Alessio Fasano, MD
Alessio Fasano, MD
Division Chief, Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition; Director, Center for Celiac Research and Treatment
Director, Mucosal Immunology and Biology Research Center; Associate Chief for Basic, Clinical and Translational Research
Departments, Centers, & Programs:
Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114-2696
- MD, University of Naples School of Medicine
- Residency, University of Naples School of Medicine
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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.
- Feb | 7 | 2020
Research at the MGH is interwoven throughout more than 30 departments, centers and units and is conducted with the support and guidance of the MGH Research Institute. The Research Roundup is a monthly series highlighting studies, news and events.