About Ali Topaloglu, MD

Dr. Topaloglu graduated from the Faculty of Medicine at Cukurova University in Adana, Turkey, and completed his Pediatrics training at Istanbul Zeynep Kamil Children's Hospital. He then pursued further training in Pediatric Endocrinology at Loyola University of Chicago and a postdoctoral fellowship in Molecular Genetics at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. In 1999, he returned to Turkey, where he worked as a professor at his alma mater until 2016, when he joined the University of Mississippi Medical Center. He became a member of the Division of Pediatric Endocrinology at MGH in 2022. 

Throughout his career, Dr. Topaloglu has been dedicated to being a clinician/scientist academician. He has authored over 100 peer-reviewed articles and textbook chapters and presented at major international conferences. His research has focused on the regulation of the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal axis, specifically what triggers puberty, which remains a mystery to this day. Along with his colleagues, he discovered the crucial role of neurokinin B and its receptor in human puberty, which helped identify the GnRH pulse generator as the Kisspeptin (KNDy) neurons of the hypothalamus in the brain. His ultimate goal is to achieve a complete understanding of the stimuli that initiate the pubertal process, as well as the underlying mechanisms responsible for delayed and absent puberty in adolescents. 

Dr. Topaloglu is a pediatric endocrinologist who is deeply invested in his patients' well-being and quality of life. He enjoys exploring the physiology of hormones and their interactions with multiple organ systems.

 

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Locations

Mass General for Children: Pediatric Endocrine Program and Diabetes Center
55 Fruit St.
Boston, MA 02114
Phone: 617-726-2909
Fax: 617-643-9140

Brigham and Women's/Mass General Health Care Center at Foxborough
20 & 22 Patriot Place
Foxboro, MA 02035
Phone: 617-726-2909
Fax: 617-643-9140

Mass General for Children at Blue Hills Medical Center
340 Wood Rd.
Braintree, MA 02184
Phone: 617-726-2909
Fax: 617-643-9140

Medical Education

  • MD, Cukurova University School of Medicine
  • Residency, Istanbul Zeynep Kamil Children's Hospital
  • Fellowship, Loyola University Medical Center
  • Fellowship, Mount Sinai School of Medicine

American Board Certifications

  • Pediatric Endocrinology, American Board of Pediatrics
  • Pediatrics, American Board of Pediatrics

Accepted Insurance Plans

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Research

Throughout human development, the activities of the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis from late embryo to young adulthood are crucial. Dr. Topaloglu has dedicated his efforts to gaining complete insight into the central regulation of the HPG axis, particularly what drives pubertal onset. Collaborating with his colleagues for the past 15 years, Dr. Topaloglu has identified and reported several genes associated with pubertal failure. The most notable of these genes are TAC3, TACR3, and KISS1, which are instrumental in defining our current understanding of the GnRH pulse generator as the KNDy neurons in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus. The KNDy cells consist of kisspeptin, neurokinin B, and dynorphin, each with a distinct role in generating GnRH pulses. The KNDy cells are reactivated at the beginning of the second decade of human life, which signals the start of puberty, a major life event that marks the end of childhood and the beginning of adolescence. This new stage is characterized by developing secondary sex characteristics, maturing reproductive capacity, and psychosocial identity. However, the stimulus that reactivates the GnRH pulse generator after a prolonged quiescence during childhood remains an enigma, and identifying such a stimulus is Dr. Topaloglu's current research challenge.

Publications

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