Research on Diseases

Intestinal DiseaseImage of an intestinal tumor arising from a stem cell. Image courtesy of David Breault, MD, PhD, Children's Hospital Boston.

David Breault, MD, PhD of Children’s Division of Endocrinology and an affiliate member of the Stem Cell Program at Children's Hospital Boston, studies the small intestine’s stem cells, which are found in the wall of the intestine in small crypts.

These highly specialized cells are resistant to typical injuries affecting the gut and are thought to help in the healing process. Breault and his team are particularly interested in telomerase, an enzyme that allows unlimited division of stem cells.  Understanding how these important cells are regulated may one day lead to treatments for intestinal diseases.