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About Sickkids
About SickKids

Yaron Avitzur , MD

The Hospital for Sick Children
Medical Director, Intestinal Rehabilitation and Transplantation
Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition

Staff Gastroenterologist
Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition

University of Toronto
Associate Professor

Phone: 416-813-6176
Fax: 416-813-6531
Email: yaron.avitzur@sickkids.ca
Alternate Contact: Shawana Estwick
Alternate Email: shawana.estwick@sickkids.ca

Brief Biography

Dr. Yaron Avitzur is an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto and the Medical Director of Intestinal Rehabilitation and Transplantation in the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition at The Hospital for Sick Children. He is also the Medical Director of the joint program in Intestinal Transplantation, University Health network and Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto. Dr. Avitzur graduated in medicine from Sackler Faculty of Medicine at Tel-Aviv University, Israel and completed Paediatric residency in Schneider Children’s Medical Center of Israel. He was licensed as a Pediatric Gastroenterologist in 2005 after a dual fellowship in Pediatric Gastroenterology and Pediatric Academic Multi-Organ Transplantation (PAMOT) at The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto.

Upon the completion of his fellowship he returned to Israel and joined the Institute of Gastroenterology, Nutrition and Liver Diseases at Schneider Children’s Medical Center of Israel as a senior Pediatric Gastroenterologist. While in Israel he led the performance of the first pediatric intestine transplantation in Israel. Dr. Avitzur joined the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition in SickKids as a staff Gastroenterologist in 2009. He was  the Division’s Training Program Director from 2014 - 2019.

His areas of specialty and clinical work include paediatric liver and intestinal transplantation, intestinal failure and rehabilitation and congenital diarrheas.

In addition to his clinical work Dr. Avitzur is involved and leads the development of medical policies, clinical guidelines and position statements in organ transplantation at provincial, national and international organizations. Dr. Avitzur is also involved in charity work as a member of the Board of directors of the Ronald McDonald House charities in Toronto.

Research Interests

Dr. Avitzur’s research interest and activity aligns with his clinical interest and focus on short and long term outcome after pediatric liver and intestine transplantation and on intestinal failure. More recently Dr. Avitzur is studying the immunological and clinical aspects of allergies and immune mediated diseases in pediatric recipients of liver transplantation through multi-center collaborations and translational research.

Within the field of intestinal failure Dr. Avitzur is studying the clinical aspects of intestinal failure and rehabilitation with a specific focus on the impact of intestinal rehabilitation on intestinal transplant candidates, intestine transplantation listing criteria and the genotype-phenotype characterization of rare congenital diarrheas. Dr. Avitzur currently leads the international intestinal failure registry under the Intestinal Rehabilitation and Transplant association (IRTA).

Dr. Avitzur has published more than 90 peer reviewed publications, review papers and book chapters in leading journals.


Selected publications over the last five years - For a complete list of publications please see PubMed.

Advances in Evaluation of Chronic Diarrhea in Infants. (June 2018). Thiagarajah J, Kamin D, Acra S, Goldsmith J, Roland J, Lencer W, Muise A, Goldenring J, Avitzur Y, Martin, M, PediCODE consortium. Gastroenterology. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 29654747.

De Novo Allergy and Immune-Mediated Disorders Following Solid-Organ Transplantation-Prevalance, Natural History, and Risk Factors. (May 2018). Marcus N, Amir AZ, Grunebaum E, Dipchand A, Hebert D, Ng VL, Walters T, Avitzur Y. The Journal of Pediatrics. 196: pp 154–60. PMID: 29395171.

Quality of life on long-term parenteral nutrition: can it be an indication for intestinal transplantation? (April 2018). Avitzur Y, Miserachs M. Current Opinion in Organ Transplantation. 23(2): pp 199–206. PMID: 29351131.

Predicting Intestinal Adaptation in Pediatric Intestinal Failure: A Retrospective Cohort Study. (December 2017). Belza C, Fitzgerald K, de Silva N, Avitzur Y, Steinberg K, Courtney-Martin G, Wales PW. Annals of Surgery. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 29206679.

Long-term outcomes of de novo autoimmune hepatitis in pediatric liver transplant recipients. (September 2017). Ekong UD, McKiernan P, Martinez M, Lobritto S, Kelly D, Ng VL, Alonso EM, Avitzur Y.Pediatric Transplantation. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 28556542.

Preventing the Progression of Intestinal Failure-Associated Liver Disease in Infants Using a Composite Lipid Emulsion:  A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial of SMOFlipid. (July 2017). Diamond IR, Grant RC, Pencharz PB, de Silva N, Feldman BM, Fitzgerald P, Sigalet D, Dicken B, Turner J, Marchand V, Ling SC, Moore AM, Avitzur Y, Wales PW. Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition. 41(5): pp 866-877.  PMID: 26838529.

Persistence of hepatic fibrosis in pediatric intestinal failure patients treated with intravenous fish oil lipid emulsion. (May 2017). Belza C, Thompson R, Somers GR, de Silva N, Fitzgerald K, Steinberg K, Courtney-Martin G, Wales PW, Avitzur Y. Journal of Pediatric Surgery. 52(5): pp 795-801. PMID: 28189450.

Liver transplantation for children with acute liver failure associated with secondary hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis. (September 2016). Amir AZ, Ling SC, Naqvi A, Weitzman S, Fecteau A, Grant D, Ghanekar A, Cattral M, Nalli N, Cutz E, Kamath B, Jones N, De Angelis M, Ng V, Avitzur Y. Liver Transplantation. 22(9): pp 1245-1253. PMID: 27216884.

Enteral approaches in malabsorption. (April 2016). Avitzur Y, Courtney-Martin. Best Practice & Research Clinical Gastroenterology. 30(2): pp 295-307. PMID: 27086892.

Impact of Intestinal Rehabilitation Program and Its Innovative Therapies on the Outcome of Intestinal Transplant Candidates. (July 2015). Avitzur Y, Wang JY, de Silva NT, Burghardt KM, DeAngelis M, Grant D, Ng VL, Jones N, Wales PW. Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. 61(1): pp 18-23.  PMID: 25611029.

Mutations in Plasmalemma Vesicle Associated Protein Result in Sieving Protein Losing Enteropathy Characterized by Hypoproteinemia, Hypoalbuminemia and Hypertriglyceridemia. (July 2015). Elkadri A, Thoeni C, Deharvengt SJ, Murchie R, Guo C, Stavropoulos JD, Marshall CR, Wales P, Bandsma R, Cutz E, Roifman CM, Chitayat D, Avitzur Y*, Stan RV*, Muise AM*. Cellular and Molecular Gastroenterology and Hepatology. pp 381-394. PMID: 26207260.

Pediatric intestinal transplant listing criteria – a call for a change in the new era of intestinal failure outcomes. (June 2015). Burghardt KM, Wales PW, de Silva N, Stephens D, Yap J, Grant D, Avitzur Y. American Journal of Transplantation. 15(6): pp 1674-1681. PMID: 25809131.

Eosinophilic esophagitis after organ transplantation and post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder: more questions than answers. (November 2014). Allen U, Avitzur Y. Pediatric Transplantation. 18(7): pp 665-667. PMID: 25250970. 

Predicting outcomes for children awaiting liver transplantation: is serum sodium the answer? (May 2014). Ling SC, Avitzur Y. Hepatology. 59(5): pp1678-1680. PMID 24375691.

Mutations in tetratricopeptide repeat domain 7A result in a severe form of very early onset inflammatory bowel disease. (April 2014). Avitzur Y*, Guo C*, Mastropaolo LA, Bahrami E, Chen H, Zhao Z, Elkadri A, Dhillon S, Murchie R, Fattouh R, Huynh H, Walker JL, Wales PW, Cutz E, Kakuta Y, Dudley J, Kammermeier J, Powrie F, Shah N, Walz C, Nathrath M, Kotlarz D, Puchaka J, Krieger J, Racek T, Kirchner T, Walters TD, Brumell JH, Griffiths AM, Rezaei N, Rashtian P, Najafi M, Monajemzadeh M, Pelsue S, McGovern DP, Uhlig HH, Schadt E, Klein C, Snapper SB, Muise AM. Gastroenterology. 146 (4): pp 1028-1039. PMID: 24417819.

A CARD9 polymorphism is associated with decreased likelihood of persistent conjugated hyperbilirubinemia in intestinal failure. (January 2014). Burghardt KM, Avinashi V, Kosar C, Xu W, Wales P, Avitzur Y*, Muise A*. PLoS One. 9(1): e85915. PMID: 24465786.

From diarrhea to obesity in prohormone convertase 1/3 deficiency: age-dependent clinical, pathologic, and enteroendocrine characteristics. (November 2013). Bandsma R*, Sokollik C*, Chami R,Cutz E, Brubaker P, Hamilton J, Perlman K, Zlotkin S, Sigalet D, Sherman P, Martin M, Avitzur Y. Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology. 47(10): pp 834-843. PMID: 24135795.

Congenital proprotein convertase 1/3 deficiency causes malabsorptive diarrhea and other endocrinopathies in a pediatric cohort. (July 2013). Martin M, Lindberg I, Solorzano-Vargas R, Wang J, Avitzur Y, Bandsma R, Sokollik C, Lawrence S, Pickett L, Chen Z, Egritas O, Dalgic B, Albornoz V, de Ridder L, Hulst J, Gok F, Aydoğan A, Al-Hussaini A, Gok D, Yourshaw M, Wu V, Cortina G, Georgia S. Gastroenterology. 145(1): pp 138-148. PMID: 23562752.