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Cleveland Clinic Elevates John Fung MD PhD To Chair Of Digestive Disease Institute

After an international search, Cleveland Clinic announced today, John Fung, MD, PhD, has been named Chair of its Digestive Disease Institute. Dr. Fung will replace Robert Wyllie, MD, who has served as interim Chair of the Digestive Disease Institute since March 2010. The previous chair was Victor Fazio, MD, who is currently on staff at Cleveland Clinic.

Ranked No. 2 in the nation for digestive disorders by U.S. News & World Report for several years, the Digestive Disease Institute is one of the largest in the country. It is also the first of its kind to integrate specialists in gastroenterology and hepatology, colorectal surgery, hepato-pancreato-biliary and transplant surgery, general surgery and nutrition.

“Dr. Fung is an internationally renown and highly respected transplant surgeon who has been part of the Cleveland Clinic team since 2004,” said Delos M. Cosgrove, MD, CEO and President of Cleveland Clinic. “He is an effective leader and will build on the strong history of innovation and world-class care the Digestive Disease Institute provides for our patients.”

In his new capacity, Dr. Fung will oversee more than 350 employees of the Digestive Disease Institute. Prior to his appointment, Dr. Fung had served as Chairman of the Department of General Surgery at Cleveland Clinic. He is currently a Professor of Surgery at the Lerner College of Medicine at Case Western University.

“John Fung is an outstanding surgical leader, dedicated to his patients,” said Joseph Hahn, MD, Chief of Staff, Cleveland Clinic. “His leadership, combined with his global reputation and clinical and surgical talent, strongly position him to lead the Digestive Disease Institute.”

With more than 25 years experience in kidney, liver, pancreas, islet, and intestinal transplantation, he is also an accomplished immunologist. Dr. Fung received degrees from the Johns Hopkins University and the University of Chicago. He completed his surgical residency at the University of Rochester, and a transplant surgery fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh, under the guidance of Dr. Thomas Starzl.

“The breadth of expertise amongst the clinical staff and healthcare providers – along with a long history of innovations in gastrointestinal diseases – makes this appointment as Chair of the Digestive Disease Institute a notable honor for me,” Dr. Fung said. “The commitment of Cleveland Clinic to enhancing the delivery of care while advancing the understanding of digestive disorders and teaching the next generation of trainees goes hand-in-hand with the objectives of the Digestive Disease Institute.”

His principal research interests are in transplantation immunology, immunosuppressive therapies, and liver related immunology. He has received funding from the NIH, the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, as well as support from industry.

About the Digestive Disease Institute

The Digestive Disease Institute at Cleveland Clinic is among the nation’s only integrated diagnosis and treatment centers combining gastrointestinal and colorectal specialists. The offers expertise in advanced endoscopy, minimally-invasive surgery, hepatobiliary and transplant surgery, nutrition therapy and support, pancreatic-biliary disorders, inflammatory bowel diseases and swallowing and esophageal conditions.