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Curtis L. Cetrulo Jr., M.D.

Curtis L. Cetrulo Jr., M.D.

Curtis L. Cetrulo Jr., M.D., is an attending plastic surgeon on the consulting staff at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Boston. He is also an assistant surgeon in the department of surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). In addition, Dr. Cetrulo is an assistant professor of surgery at Harvard Medical School and is on the clinical staff in the department of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).

Dr. Cetrulo is the clinical director of the Reconstructive Transplantation Service in the divisions of Transplant Surgery and Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at MGH and sees patients at the Shriners Hospitals for Children — Boston. He established the first vascularized composite allotransplantation (VCA) service, from inception to regulatory board approval to performance of “first” hand transplantation. His hand transplant case has been distinguished by his patient’s superior functional outcome, as well as for widening the applicability of this procedure for burned amputees. In 2016, he obtained IRB approval for a “first-in-human” tolerance induction protocol for hand transplantation using co-transplantation of hematopoietic stem cells, first-of-its-kind genitourinary VCA, as well as for a novel protocol for facial allotransplantation.

Currently, Dr. Cetrulo investigates a unique factor that may influence or govern skin tolerance using a mixed chimerism approach in burn injury and trauma in children. He is also performing VCA to induce tolerance through co-stimulation blockade and mixed chimerism in swine, developing a clinically applicable regimen for induction of transplant tolerance to VCA across a major histocompatibility barrier in a swine model and augmenting clinically applicable tolerance protocol for VCAs with local FK506 in primates.

Dr. Cetrulo has published 46 articles in peer-reviewed research publications and 9 articles in other peer-reviewed publications. He has published four book chapters. He has presented 10 oral and six poster presentations at professional meetings.

Dr. Cetrulo has received numerous awards/honors including:

  • Editorial Board of Vascularized Composite Allotransplantation, Microsurgery and Annals of Plastic Surgery
  • Best Oral Presentation, Basic Science Category from the American Society of Plastic Surgery
  • First Place, Team Research Award, MGH Research Day

Current positions:

  • Medical Staff, Attending Plastic Surgeon, Shriners Hospitals for Children — Boston
  • Assistant Surgeon, Department of Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH)
  • Assistant Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School
  • Clinical Staff, Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, MGH


  • BA, English, Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif.
  • M.D., Honors in Research, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Mass.

Scholarly activities: