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About Us

The Neuroimmunology Clinic and Research Laboratory at Mass General is the first home in New England for patients with NMOSD (Neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder), MOGAD (Myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein antibody disease), transverse myelitis and other rare autoimmune disorders of the central nervous system. Here, we specialize in these rare conditions – they are not an afterthought.

In our clinic, you can expect to see physicians who work at the vanguard of their fields. You might participate in a clinical trial. You could join us in increasing awareness about your particular disease. And you may find community with others who suffer from similar ailments.

Dr. Levy was very responsive, very compassionate and also very easy to talk with. He made me and my husband both feel very welcome and open to any questions that we have.

Neuroimmunology Clinic Patient

Diseases We Treat

Research and Clinical Trials

Doctor and patient at desk
Collecting information for the CIRCLES biospecimen study.

The Neuroimmunology Lab is actively involved in research to advance knowledge, improve care, unearth new treatments, and ultimately find cures for NMO and MOG spectrum disorders.

We conduct research and clinical studies in our state-of-the-art neuroimmunology laboratory in Charlestown, and participate with industry in clinical trials of new and repurposed drugs to treat these rare neuroimmunological disorders.

Current Research

  • New biomarkers of neuroimmunological disorders: Just as aquaporin-4 and MOG antibodies have transformed the field for patients with NMOSD, we are looking for new antibodies and specific immune cells that could identify patients with other autoimmune diseases of the nervous system
  • Genetic studies in familial transverse myelitis: We found the first genetic mutation in patients with familial transverse myelitis. We are actively recruiting more TM patients for testing and we have developed mouse models of these mutations to understand the role they play in this disease
  • Mouse models of NMOSD and MOGAD: Mouse models of NMOSD and MOG antibody disease are critical in our work to develop tolerization therapy. Tolerization therapy re-educates the immune system to stop attacking its own spinal cord and optic nerve. This therapy carries the promise of a durable cure that will not require long term immune-suppressive medications
  • Does diet affect disease course in MOGAD? To enroll, contact Lexi Marta at amarta1@jhu.edu

Patient blood samples are critical for the success of this research. We were pleased to be a site for the CIRCLES biorepository sponsored by the Guthy Jackson Research Foundation, and are continuing to collect blood from our own patients and the Mass General Brigham BioBank.

Active Clinical Trials

The Neuroimmunology Laboratory is a site for several sponsored studies, including: 

  • Eculizumab in children with AQP4+ NMO (Alexion) – Now enrolling
    To enroll, contact Dr. Levy at mlevy11@mgh.harvard.edu or call 617-724-3627
  • Inebulizumab in children with AQP4+ NMO (Horizon) – Now enrolling
    To enroll, contact Dr. Levy at mlevy11@mgh.harvard.edu or call 617-724-3627
  • Rozanolixizumab for adults with MOGAD – Now enrolling
    To enroll, contact Ozden Ozkur Akinci, oozkurakinci@mgh.harvard.edu
  • SPHERES (With Guthy Jackson Charitable Foundation and CorEvitas) – a registry for patients with NMOSD to ascertain treatment efficacy and safety – Now enrolling
    To enroll, please ask your neurologist at time of visit
  • Satralizumab for adults with AQP4+ NMO who have never been on immune suppressants or who relapsed on Rituximab or a biosimilar – Now enrolling. To enroll, contact Santiago Pardo at spardo1@mgh.harvard.edu or 410-926-6248
  • Satralizumab for adults with MOGAD – Now enrolling
    To enroll, contact Alexis Marta at amarta@mgh.harvard.edu
  • Ravulizumab in adults (Alexion) – No longer enrolling
  • Point-of-care dry blood spot diagnostic test for AQP4+ patients – No longer enrolling
  • TENS for pain in AQP4+ NMO –No longer enrolling

We plan to launch additional clinical trials for MOG antibody disease soon.

Please ask your doctor if you can participate in any of the trials for which we are now recruiting patients.

We look forward to hosting additional trials in the future, and will announce the research as it becomes available to our patients.

Education and Outreach

Dr. Matiello speaks at Boston Patient Day 2019
Dr. Matiello speaks at Boston Patient Day 2019.

The Neuroimmunology Clinic and Research Laboratory is a center for education about NMOSD, MOGAD and related disorders.

For professionals, we house fellowship programs, host medical residents and offer educational programming. We are working to raise awareness among physicians around the world about these often-unknown diseases.

For patients and the public at large, we are raising the profile of NMOSD and MOGAD, increasing name recognition and promoting understanding about living with invisible chronic illness. The Clinic will provide its own educational programs and also partner with other institutions to offer learning opportunities for patients and their communities, including an annual “patient day”, sponsored by the Guthy Jackson Charitable Foundation and hosted by Brigham & Women’s Hospital.

Recent Events

Dr. Levy regularly appears on podcasts and webinars about neuroimmune disorders. Visit our YouTube playlists to find recordings.

May 7, 2021:  Dr. Levy discusses Covid-19 and rare neuroimmune disorders with GG deFiebre of SRNA in a podcast here.

February 28, 2021: In this continuing medical education (CME) course for physicians, Dr. Levy and Dr. Prem Subramanian, ophthalmologist from the University of Colorado Hospital, discuss optic neuritis in NMOSD.

February 16, 2021: Dr. Levy summarizes his lab’s current research in this podcast from the Siegel Rare Neuroimmune Association.

Earlier Events

October 19, 2020: Dr. Levy joins Dr. Leslie Benson from Boston Children's Hospital for a discussion about adult and pediatric presentations of MOG Antibody Disease in this Siegel Rare Neuroimmune Association podcast.

May 13, 2020:
The Siegel Rare Neuroimmune Association "Ask the Expert" podcast series presents Dr. Levy and Dr. Benjamin Greenberg from UT Southwestern in Dallas, TX, discussing COVID-19 and rare neuroimmune disorders

February 29, 2020: The McCourt Foundation Educational Update – Drs. Levy and Matiello shared current thinking and the latest research in NMO and MOG spectrum disorders at this educational event about neurological conditions in Newton, Massachusetts.

October 5, 2019: The NMO Clinic and Research Lab at Mass General cohosted a day with Neurology at Brigham & Women’s for NMOSD patients at a conference sponsored by the Guthy Jackson Foundation at Brigham & Women’s.  Experts from both hospitals as well as Dr. Vanda Lennon from the Mayo Clinic shared updates in treatments and research, and answered patient questions.

October 4, 2019: The NMO Clinic and Research Lab hosted a CME course covering progress in the understanding of and research in Neuromyelitis optica.

Other Patient Resources

Direct manufacturer assistance, including financial support, care coordination and educational resources is available for patients using medications from Alexion, Genentech/Roche and Horizon Therapeutics. In addition, we can recommend the following patient support and advocacy organizations:

  • Patients Like Me - A patient-led community where you can share your experiences and learn from others

Financial assistance organizations for patients include:

  • Victoria's Victory - Small grants for in-home nursing services, home & mobility equipment, vehicle/driver assistance
  • The Assistance Fund - Financial support for eligible patients including travel costs and copays
  • NeedyMeds - Connecting patients with programs offering help with healthcare costs
  • PAN Foundation - The Patient Access Network helps patients with out-of-pocket medical costs
  • RxAssist - Comprehensive directory of patient assistance programs
  • 180 Medical Scholarships - College scholarships for people with TM and other conditions

Pediatric Clinic

Tanija Chitnis Tanuja Chitnis, MD

  • Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School
  • Director, Mass General Brigham Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center, Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Director, Translational Neuroimmunology Research Center, Brigham and Women’s Hospital
  • Director, CLIMB Study, Mass General Brigham Multiple Sclerosis Center, Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Pediatric Research

Tanija Chitnis Michael Levy, MD, PhD

  • Director, NMO Clinic and Research Laboratory
  • Research Director, Division of Neuroimmunology & Neuroinfectious Disease

Other Team Members

Gabriela Romanow Gabriela Romanow

  • Administrator for Community Relations, Clinical Research Coordinator (Mon - Thurs)

Zaida Ortega Zaida Ortega

  • Practice Manager

Clinical Research Coordinators

Rebecca Salky
Rebecca Salky

William Coffey
William Coffey

Alexis Marta
Alexis Marta