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Gastroenterology and Hepatology Clinical Trials

Thank you for your interest in our research.

The Division of Gastroenterology at Penn State College of Medicine is dedicated to improving treatment for gastrointestinal diseases through research.

Multiple studies are open to adult volunteers ages 18 and older with the following conditions:

  • Celiac disease
  • Colon polyp management
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Eosinophilic esophagitis
  • Gastroparesis
  • Liver cancer
  • Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • and more

Additional criteria may apply.

Use the buttons below to learn more about the clinical studies available, or contact the team directly:

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Open Clinical Studies

View actively recruiting studies on StudyFinder, our searchable database of clinical research taking place at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and Penn State College of Medicine.

Selected studies are listed below.

Celiac Disease Expand answer

Penn State Health features the only comprehensive celiac center in central Pennsylvania. In addition to this specialty clinic, researchers are also studying treatments for celiac disease through clinical trials.

A Phase 3, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo Controlled Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of Larazotide for Relief of Persistent Symptoms in Patients with Celiac Disease on a Gluten Free Diet

Dr. Kofi Clarke and Dr. Matthew Coates

Learn more on Studyfinder

General Expand answer

These trials encompass a wide variety of common topics related to digestive disease. Presently, our investigators are participating in trials evaluating new methods for monitoring and managing colon cancer and using fecal microbial therapy for the treatment of recurrent Clostridium difficile diarrhea and other disorders.

Studies will be posted here when they become available.

Hepatology Expand answer

Hepatology focuses on studying potential therapies for the management of liver-related diseases and disorders. Researchers are involved in a variety of single and multi-center trials designed to examine potential treatments for alcoholic hepatitis, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and liver-associated cancers.

Learn more on the liver research website

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Expand answer

These trials are focused on investigating potential therapies for Crohn’s disease (CD), ulcerative colitis (UC), microscopic colitis and their associated complications. Researchers are involved in several multi-center pharmaceutical trials evaluating new medications for CD and UC.

A Phase 2 Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study of the Safety and Efficacy of BMS-986165 in Subjects with Moderate-to-Severe Crohn’s Disease

Dr. Kofi Clarke, Dr. Matthew Coates and Dr. Emmanuelle Williams

Learn more on Studyfinder

A Phase 3, Multicenter, Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled Study of Oral Ozanimod as Induction Therapy for Moderately to Severely Active Crohn’s Disease

Dr. Kofi Clarke, Dr. Matthew Coates and Dr. Emmanuelle Williams

Learn more on Studyfinder

Motility Expand answer

This specialty focuses on the management of functional and neuromuscular disorders of the digestive system, including:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome, also known as IBS
  • Dysphagia, also known as difficulty swallowing, gastroparesis
  • Chronic constipation and fecal dyssynergia, also known as difficulty passing bowel movements)

Researchers are actively studying the use of domperidone for gastroparesis as well as a novel therapy for eosinophilic esophagitis.

Domperidone Protocol: Use of Domperidone to Treat Patients with Gastrointestinal Disorders who have Failed Standard Therapy.

Primary investigator: Meeta Desai, MD

The purpose of this study is to treat patients who are facing a serious condition (gastroparesis) that lacks therapeutic alternatives.

This is not a traditional clinical trial, as the intention of this study is not to obtain information about the safety or effectiveness of the drug. Rather, the study allows access to otherwise unavailable drug domperidone under the FDA’s Compassionate Use Program.

A Phase 3, Multicenter, Multinational, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Induction and Maintenance Study to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of CC-93538 in Adult and Adolescent Subjects with Eosinophilic Esophagitis.

Sponsor: Celgene
Primary investigator: Kofi Clarke, MD

The scope of the study is to use a novel biologic drug, CC-93538, against symptoms of esophageal dysfunction, including inflammation in people with Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). The CC-93538 will target the IL-13 receptor, a key driver of disease pathology in EoE. In addition, the study will evaluate the safety and efficacy of CC-93538 in placebo-controlled Induction, Maintenance and Open-Label Extension study programs.

Pancreaticobiliary and therapeutics Expand answer

This sub-specialty focus on evaluation of diseases and disorders of the pancreas and biliary tree as well as use of advanced endoscopic techniques in the management of digestive disorders. Currently active trials include studies of novel methods for colonic polyp removal and preventing post-polypectomy bleeding, as well as new techniques for managing pancreatic cysts.

CHARM II: Chemotherapy for Ablation and Resolution of Mucinous Pancreatic Cysts: A Prospective, Randomized, Double-blind, Multi-center Clinical Trial.

Learn more on Studyfinder

Important Study Information

The research team has taken several steps to keep research participants safe. This includes:

  • Conducting research visits remotely (from home) when possible.
  • Practicing social distancing and using appropriate personal protective equipment (masks, face shields, gloves) during in-person research visits.
  • Screening prior to all in-person research visits, including temperature checks for all employees and participants.
  • Sanitation of all research spaces and equipment.


The study team is available to answer questions you may have about open studies and research participation: