Alan Leichtner

Alan Leichtner, MD, MSHPEd

Clinical Vice Chair, Department of Medicine; Chief Medical Education Officer, Boston Children’s Hospital

Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School

    Contact: 617-355-2946
  • Fax: 617-730-4841

Medical Services


  • Gastroenterology


  • Medicine


  • Celiac Disease Program and Support Group
To schedule an appointment: Call 617-355-2946
Alan Leichtner

Philosophy of Care 

My goal has always been to provide the best standard of care for my patients. I never recommend anything that I wouldn’t do for a family member with the same condition.  I strongly believe that decision-making in healthcare should be collaboration between the healthcare team and the patient and family.  In order to make this collaboration work well, communication is key.

Experience and Education


Medical School

Harvard Medical School, 1977

Boston, MA


Boston Children's Hospital, 1977-1978

Boston, MA


Boston Children's Hospital, 1978-1980

Boston, MA

Fellowship, Gastroenterology

Boston Children's Hospital, 1983

Boston, MA





  • American Board of Pediatrics, Pediatric Gastroenterology

Professional History

Dr. Leichtner has spent all but 4 years of his career practicing pediatric gastroenterology at Boston Children’s Hospital and as director of clinical gastroenterology.   During this time, the division has expanded to include multiple centers and subspecialty programs as well as satellite offices.   In order to truly provide the best possible care for children with pediatric gastrointestinal disorders, Dr. Leichtner believes that it is necessary to have care provided by acknowledged experts in each disorder and to bring care to the community.  Over the last few years, he has personally focused on the care of children with celiac disease.  Boston Children’s Hospital has established a Celiac Disease Program and the Celiac Kid’s Connection, a group to support patients and families.  The physicians in the Celiac Disease Center are dedicated to providing the highest quality care, in a way that minimizes the trauma of testing to our patients.  Dr. Leichtner has also been very interested in patient and family education and has created videos for families and comic books for children to help them understand chronic gastrointestinal disorders.


Clinical research on Celiac Disease

Clinical research on Inflammatory Bowel Disease Gastrointestinal allergy

Alan Leichtner, MD, Research site


Publications powered by Harvard Catalyst Profiles
  1. Mallon D, Leichtner AM. Objective Assessment of Fellows: Doable and Worth Doing. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2017 Apr; 64(4):498-500.
  2. Leonard MM, Weir DC, DeGroote M, Mitchell PD, Singh P, Silvester JA, Leichtner AM, Fasano A. Value of IgA tTG in Predicting Mucosal Recovery in Children With Celiac Disease on a Gluten-Free Diet. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2017 Feb; 64(2):286-291.
  3. Gooding HC, McCarty C, Millson R, Jiang H, Armstrong E, Leichtner AM. The Boston Children's Hospital Academy: Development and Initial Assessment of a Hospital-Based Teaching Academy. Acad Med. 2016 12; 91(12):1651-1654.
  4. Mallon D, Vernacchio L, Leichtner AM, Kerfoot BP. 'Constipation Challenge' game improves guideline knowledge and implementation. Med Educ. 2016 May; 50(5):589-90.
  5. Mallon D, Vernacchio L, Trudell E, Antonelli R, Nurko S, Leichtner AM, Lightdale JR. Shared care: a quality improvement initiative to optimize primary care management of constipation. Pediatrics. 2015 May; 135(5):e1300-7.
  6. Zeissig S, Petersen BS, Tomczak M, Melum E, Huc-Claustre E, Dougan SK, Laerdahl JK, Stade B, Forster M, Schreiber S, Weir D, Leichtner AM, Franke A, Blumberg RS. Early-onset Crohn's disease and autoimmunity associated with a variant in CTLA-4. Gut. 2015 Dec; 64(12):1889-97.
  7. Robson J, Leichtner AM, Sauer CG. Assessment tools: the next frontier in competency-based medical education. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2014 Oct; 59(4):425-7.
  8. Garvey KC, Kesselheim JC, Herrick DB, Woolf AD, Leichtner AM. Graduate medical education in humanism and professionalism: a needs assessment survey of pediatric gastroenterology fellows. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2014 Jan; 58(1):34-7.
  9. Leichtner AM, Gillis LA, Gupta S, Heubi J, Kay M, Narkewicz MR, Rider EA, Rufo PA, Sferra TJ, Teitelbaum J. NASPGHAN guidelines for training in pediatric gastroenterology. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2013 Jan; 56 Suppl 1:S1-8.
  10. Panzer RM, Dennis M, Kelly CP, Weir D, Leichtner A, Leffler DA. Navigating the gluten-free diet in college. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2012 Dec; 55(6):740-4.
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  12. Tanpowpong P, Obuch JC, Jiang H, McCarty CE, Katz AJ, Leffler DA, Kelly CP, Weir DC, Leichtner AM, Camargo CA. Multicenter study on season of birth and celiac disease: evidence for a new theoretical model of pathogenesis. J Pediatr. 2013 Mar; 162(3):501-4.
  13. Pashankar DS, Leichtner AM. Pediatric gastroenterology fellowship: is the match working? J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2010 Aug; 51(2):243-4.
  14. Weir DC, Glickman JN, Roiff T, Valim C, Leichtner AM. Variability of histopathological changes in childhood celiac disease. Am J Gastroenterol. 2010 Jan; 105(1):207-12.
  15. Lillehei CW, Leichtner A, Bousvaros A, Shamberger RC. Restorative proctocolectomy and ileal pouch-anal anastomosis in children. Dis Colon Rectum. 2009 Sep; 52(9):1645-9.
  16. Dehlink E, Yen E, Leichtner AM, Hait EJ, Fiebiger E. First evidence of a possible association between gastric acid suppression during pregnancy and childhood asthma: a population-based register study. Clin Exp Allergy. 2009 Feb; 39(2):246-53.
  17. Salvestrini C, McGrath JA, Ozoemena L, Husain K, Buhamrah E, Sabery N, Leichtner A, Rufo PA, Perez-Atayde A, Orteu CH, Torrente F, Heuschkel RB, Thomson MA, Murch SH. Desquamative enteropathy and pyloric atresia without skin disease caused by a novel intracellular beta4 integrin mutation. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2008 Nov; 47(5):585-91.
  18. Najarian RM, Hait EJ, Leichtner AM, Glickman JN, Antonioli DA, Goldsmith JD. Clinical significance of colonic intraepithelial lymphocytosis in a pediatric population. Mod Pathol. 2009 Jan; 22(1):13-20.
  19. Leichtner AM. Fellowship training in pediatric gastroenterology in the United States: where are we going? Does one size fit all? J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2008 Sep; 47(3):274-6.
  20. El-Hallak M, Binstadt BA, Leichtner AM, Bennett CM, Neufeld EJ, Fuhlbrigge RC, Zurakowski D, Sundel RP. Clinical effects and safety of rituximab for treatment of refractory pediatric autoimmune diseases. J Pediatr. 2007 Apr; 150(4):376-82.
  21. St Clair NE, Kim CC, Semrin G, Woodward AL, Liang MG, Glickman JN, Leichtner AM, Binstadt BA. Celiac disease presenting with chilblains in an adolescent girl. Pediatr Dermatol. 2006 Sep-Oct; 23(5):451-4.
  22. Zholudev A, Zurakowski D, Young W, Leichtner A, Bousvaros A. Serologic testing with ANCA, ASCA, and anti-OmpC in children and young adults with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis: diagnostic value and correlation with disease phenotype. Am J Gastroenterol. 2004 Nov; 99(11):2235-41.
  23. Szigethy E, Levy-Warren A, Whitton S, Bousvaros A, Gauvreau K, Leichtner AM, Beardslee WR. Depressive symptoms and inflammatory bowel disease in children and adolescents: a cross-sectional study. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2004 Oct; 39(4):395-403.
  24. Glickman JN, Bousvaros A, Farraye FA, Zholudev A, Friedman S, Wang HH, Leichtner AM, Odze RD. Pediatric patients with untreated ulcerative colitis may present initially with unusual morphologic findings. Am J Surg Pathol. 2004 Feb; 28(2):190-7.
  25. Gonzalez-Heydrich J, Raches D, Wilens TE, Leichtner A, Mezzacappa E. Retrospective study of hepatic enzyme elevations in children treated with olanzapine, divalproex, and their combination. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2003 Oct; 42(10):1227-33.
  26. Heuschkel R, Afzal N, Wuerth A, Zurakowski D, Leichtner A, Kemper K, Tolia V, Bousvaros A. Complementary medicine use in children and young adults with inflammatory bowel disease. Am J Gastroenterol. 2002 Feb; 97(2):382-8.
  27. Srivastava M, Zurakowski D, Cheifetz P, Leichtner A, Bousvaros A. Elevated serum hepatocyte growth factor in children and young adults with inflammatory bowel disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2001 Nov; 33(5):548-53.
  28. Bousvaros A, Kirschner BS, Werlin SL, Parker-Hartigan L, Daum F, Freeman KB, Balint JP, Day AS, Griffiths AM, Zurakowski D, Ferry GD, Leichtner AM. Oral tacrolimus treatment of severe colitis in children. J Pediatr. 2000 Dec; 137(6):794-9.
  29. Walsh SV, Antonioli DA, Goldman H, Fox VL, Bousvaros A, Leichtner AM, Furuta GT. Allergic esophagitis in children: a clinicopathological entity. Am J Surg Pathol. 1999 Apr; 23(4):390-6.
  30. Giannasca PJ, Giannasca KT, Leichtner AM, Neutra MR. Human intestinal M cells display the sialyl Lewis A antigen. Infect Immun. 1999 Feb; 67(2):946-53.
  31. Bousvaros A, Leichtner A, Zurakowski D, Kwon J, Law T, Keough K, Fishman S. Elevated serum vascular endothelial growth factor in children and young adults with Crohn's disease. Dig Dis Sci. 1999 Feb; 44(2):424-30.
  32. Shamberger RC, Masek BJ, Leichtner AM, Winter HS, Lillehei CW. Quality-of-life assessment after ileoanal pull-through for ulcerative colitis and familial adenomatous polyposis. J Pediatr Surg. 1999 Jan; 34(1):163-6.
  33. Klein GL, Leichtner AM, Heyman MB. Aluminum in large and small volume parenterals used in total parenteral nutrition: response to the Food and Drug Administration notice of proposed rule by the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1998 Oct; 27(4):457-60.
  34. Fishman SJ, Burrows PE, Leichtner AM, Mulliken JB. Gastrointestinal manifestations of vascular anomalies in childhood: varied etiologies require multiple therapeutic modalities. J Pediatr Surg. 1998 Jul; 33(7):1163-7.
  35. Hoppin AG, Kaplan LM, Zurakowski D, Leichtner AM, Bousvaros A. Serum leptin in children and young adults with inflammatory bowel disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1998 May; 26(5):500-5.
  36. Bousvaros A, Zurakowski D, Duggan C, Law T, Rifai N, Goldberg NE, Leichtner AM. Vitamins A and E serum levels in children and young adults with inflammatory bowel disease: effect of disease activity. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1998 Feb; 26(2):129-35.
  37. Hyams J, Davis P, Lerer T, Colletti RB, Bousvaros A, Leichtner A, Benkov K, Justinich C, Markowitz J. Clinical outcome of ulcerative proctitis in children. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1997 Aug; 25(2):149-52.
  38. Patel HI, Leichtner AM, Colodny AH, Shamberger RC. Surgery for Crohn's disease in infants and children. J Pediatr Surg. 1997 Jul; 32(7):1063-7; discussion 1067-8.
  39. Bousvaros A, Zurakowski D, Fishman SJ, Keough K, Law T, Sun C, Leichtner AM. Serum basic fibroblast growth factor in pediatric Crohn's disease. Implications for wound healing. Dig Dis Sci. 1997 Feb; 42(2):378-86.
  40. Fox VL, Abel SD, Malas S, Duggan C, Leichtner AM. Complications following percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy and subsequent catheter replacement in children and young adults. Gastrointest Endosc. 1997 Jan; 45(1):64-71.
  41. Bousvaros A, Wang A, Leichtner AM. Tacrolimus (FK-506) treatment of fulminant colitis in a child. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1996 Oct; 23(3):329-33.
  42. Bross DA, Leichtner AM, Zurakowski D, Law T, Bousvaros A. Elevation of serum interleukin-6 but not serum-soluble interleukin-2 receptor in children with Crohn's disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1996 Aug; 23(2):164-71.
  43. Bousvaros A, Leichtner AM, Book L, Shigeoka A, Bilodeau J, Semeao E, Ruchelli E, Mulberg AE. Treatment of pediatric autoimmune enteropathy with tacrolimus (FK506). Gastroenterology. 1996 Jul; 111(1):237-43.
  44. Alsaigh N, Odze R, Goldman H, Antonioli D, Ott MJ, Leichtner A. Gastric and esophageal intraepithelial lymphocytes in pediatric celiac disease. Am J Surg Pathol. 1996 Jul; 20(7):865-70.
  45. Shamberger RC, Leichtner AM, Jonas MM, LaQuaglia MP. Long-term hepatic regeneration and function in infants and children following liver resection. J Am Coll Surg. 1996 Jun; 182(6):515-9.
  46. Duggan C, Shamberger RC, Antonioli D, Leichtner AM. Intraoperative enteroscopy in the diagnosis of partial intestinal obstruction in infancy. Dig Dis Sci. 1995 Oct; 40(10):2236-8.
  47. Leichtner AM. Aminosalicylates for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1995 Oct; 21(3):245-52.
  48. Odze RD, Wershil BK, Leichtner AM, Antonioli DA. Allergic colitis in infants. J Pediatr. 1995 Feb; 126(2):163-70.
  49. Fox VL, Carr-Locke DL, Connors PJ, Leichtner AM. Endoscopic ligation of esophageal varices in children. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1995 Feb; 20(2):202-8.
  50. Treem WR, Berquist W, Leichtner A, McClung HJ, Rosenthal P, Shulman RJ, Balistreri WF. Medical therapies for pediatric gastrointestinal disease. Subcommittee on Therapeutics of the Patient Care Committee North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1994 Apr; 18(3):269.
  51. Shamberger RC, Hendren WH, Leichtner AM. Long-term nutritional and metabolic consequences of pancreaticoduodenectomy in children. Surgery. 1994 Mar; 115(3):382-8.
  52. Odze RD, Bines J, Leichtner AM, Goldman H, Antonioli DA. Allergic proctocolitis in infants: a prospective clinicopathologic biopsy study. Hum Pathol. 1993 Jun; 24(6):668-74.
  53. Dangman BC, Leichtner AM, Teele RL. The antegrade colonogram: extending the small bowel follow through for children suspected of having colonic disease. Pediatr Radiol. 1992; 22(8):573-6.
  54. Leichtner AM, Banta JV, Etienne N, Schwartz AN, Renshaw TS, Solari LD, Ascione J, Hyams JS. Pancreatitis following scoliosis surgery in children and young adults. J Pediatr Orthop. 1991 Sep-Oct; 11(5):594-8.
  55. Hyams JS, Moore RE, Leichtner AM, Carey DE, Goldberg BD. Longitudinal assessment of type I procollagen in children with inflammatory bowel disease subjected to surgery. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1989 Jan; 8(1):68-74.
  56. Hyams JS, Etienne NL, Leichtner AM, Theuer RC. Carbohydrate malabsorption following fruit juice ingestion in young children. Pediatrics. 1988 Jul; 82(1):64-8.
  57. Hyams JS, Moore RE, Leichtner AM, Carey DE, Goldberg BD. Relationship of type I procollagen to corticosteroid therapy in children with inflammatory bowel disease. J Pediatr. 1988 Jun; 112(6):893-8.
  58. Hyams JS, Ricci A, Leichtner AM. Clinical and laboratory correlates of esophagitis in young children. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1988 Jan-Feb; 7(1):52-6.
  59. Kent GG, McGowan GE, Hyams JS, Leichtner AM. Hypertension associated with unilateral hydronephrosis as a complication of Crohn's disease. J Pediatr Surg. 1987 Nov; 22(11):1049-50.
  60. Hyams JS, Ballow M, Leichtner AM. Cyclosporine treatment of autoimmune chronic active hepatitis. Gastroenterology. 1987 Oct; 93(4):890-3.
  61. Hyams JS, Carey DE, Leichtner AM, Goldberg BD. Type 1 procollagen as a biochemical marker of growth in children with inflammatory bowel disease. J Pediatr. 1986 Oct; 109(4):619-24.
  62. Hyams JS, Leichtner AM, Zamett LO, Walters JK. Effect of metoclopramide on prolonged intraesophageal pH testing in infants with gastroesophageal reflux. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1986 Sep-Oct; 5(5):716-20.
  63. Perlmutter DH, Leichtner AM, Goldman H, Winter HS. Chronic diarrhea associated with hypogammaglobulinemia and enteropathy in infants and children. Dig Dis Sci. 1985 Dec; 30(12):1149-55.
  64. Rasoulpour M, Leichtner A, San Jorge M, Hyams J. Cerebral vascular accident during the recovery phase of hemolytic uremic syndrome. Int J Pediatr Nephrol. 1985 Oct-Dec; 6(4):287-8.
  65. Hyams JS, Glaser JH, Leichtner AM, Morecki R. Discordance for biliary atresia in two sets of monozygotic twins. J Pediatr. 1985 Sep; 107(3):420-2.
  66. Hyams JS, Leichtner AM. Apple juice. An unappreciated cause of chronic diarrhea. Am J Dis Child. 1985 May; 139(5):503-5.
  67. Hyams JS, Leichtner AM, Breiner RG, Hill DW, McComb RB, Manger WM. Pseudopheochromocytoma and cardiac arrest associated with phenylpropanolamine. JAMA. 1985 Mar 15; 253(11):1609-10.
  68. Hyams JS, Leichtner AM, Schwartz AN. Recent advances in diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal hemorrhage in infants and children. J Pediatr. 1985 Jan; 106(1):1-9.
  69. Leichtner AM, Krieger M, Schwartz AL. Regulation of low density lipoprotein receptor function in a human hepatoma cell line. Hepatology. 1984 Sep-Oct; 4(5):897-901.
  70. Leichtner AM, Krieger M. Addition of a mannose-6-phosphate-containing oligosaccharide alters cellular processing of low density lipoprotein by parental and LDL-receptor-defective Chinese hamster ovary cells. J Cell Sci. 1984 Jun; 68:183-94.
  71. Leichtner AM, Leclair J, Goldmann DA, Schumacher RT, Gewolb IH, Katz AJ. Horizontal nonparenteral spread of hepatitis B among children. Ann Intern Med. 1981 Mar; 94(3):346-9.
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