About the Division of Rheumatology, Inflammation, and Immunity

The Brigham and Women's Hospital Division of Rheumatology, Inflammation, and Immunity is dedicated to providing the best possible care for patients with rheumatic conditions. We are nationally and internationally recognized for excellence in rheumatologic care, research and training.


The history of the Division of Rheumatology, Inflammation, and Immunity begins in 1914, with the founding of the Robert Breck Brigham Hospital for Incurables. Robert Brigham, a local patron, established the institution to care for people with chronic or incurable diseases. Over time, the hospital shifted its focus to rheumatic diseases and became the country's first teaching hospital devoted exclusively to arthritis and related diseases.

In 1972, under the guidance of K. Frank Austen, MD, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, an independent Department of Medicine at Harvard Medical School was established at what was then called the Robert B. Brigham Hospital. Eight years later, three Harvard teaching hospitals — the Robert B. Brigham Hospital, the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital and the Boston Hospital for Women — merged to form Brigham and Women's Hospital.

The current Division of Rheumatology, Inflammation, and Immunity resides within the Brigham's Department of Medicine. Our division has grown steadily over the years to become one of the leading centers of its kind in the world. We now have over 60 clinical and research faculty members and 25,667 square feet of research space in the Hale Building for Transformative Medicine in Boston's Longwood Medical and Academic Area.


Ellen M. Gravallese, MD, division chief and the Theodore Bevier Bayles Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, is an internationally recognized and accomplished rheumatologist, immunologist and basic scientist. She completed her residency in internal medicine and pathology at the Brigham and served on the hospital's faculty from 1991 to 1998. After spending 13 years as chief of the Division of Rheumatology at UMass Medical School, she returned to the Brigham to lead our division in 2019.

Dr. Gravallese's research on fundamental mechanisms of inflammation and joint destruction in inflammatory arthritis has changed our understanding of the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis and subsequent mechanisms of joint destruction in this disease. Among her many professional honors, she was the 2019-2020 president of the American College of Rheumatology and the 2019 recipient of the prestigious international Carol Nachman Prize for career achievements in rheumatology research.

The Brigham Difference

The Division of Rheumatology, Inflammation, and Immunity is ranked fifth in the country by U.S. News and World Report. Our standing is the product of our longstanding commitment to outstanding patient care, research, education and training.

  • Services: The high-quality, innovative care available in our division is guided by the latest research breakthroughs at the Brigham. Our rheumatologists are experienced in evaluating and treating the full range of rheumatic diseases. They work closely with referring primary care doctors and also with colleagues across cardiology, dermatology, neurology and pulmonary/critical care. Patients benefit from our rheumatologists' involvement in the Orthopaedic & Arthritis Center, where specialists in rheumatology, orthopaedic surgery, musculoskeletal imaging, and physical medicine and rehabilitation work together to promote excellence in rheumatic diseases treatment and research.
  • Research: Our clinician-scientists are building upon the Brigham's impressive legacy in rheumatologic research. Collectively, our investigators study the full spectrum of rheumatic diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, lupus, gout, psoriatic arthritis, vasculitis and more. Through our robust research programs, we seek to expand our knowledge of the scientific basis of disease and to translate findings into clinical practice. In addition, we are home to the country's largest clinical research group in rheumatology and offer patients access to a wide range of clinical trials across rheumatology, inflammation and immunity.
  • Education and training: Our rheumatologists also teach and train future physician leaders through the Brigham's esteemed Rheumatology and Immunology Fellowship Training Program and through educational courses on rheumatologic and musculoskeletal topic areas.

Our Physicians

Our multidisciplinary team includes board-certified physicians with fellowship training in rheumatology. These specialists work separately and together to develop precise treatment plans for each patient.

Clinical Fellows
  • Siobhan Case
  • Amy Cunningham-Bussel
  • Tiffany Hsu
  • Gregory McDermott
  • Alisa Mueller
  • Michelle Robinette
  • Jessica Williams
Research Fellows
  • Melissa Bedard
  • Sijia Chen
  • Roxane Darbousset
  • Carlos Donado
  • Mehreen Elahee
  • Heather Faust
  • Sarah Hofmann
  • Elham Karimizadeh
  • Prakash Kharel
  • Taehyeung Kim
  • Byunghee Koh
  • Priyanka Kushwawa
  • Nathalie Marchand
  • Diana Pena Nunez
  • Claire Riggs
  • John Sowerby
  • Vanessa Wacleche
  • Qiang Wang

Contact and Locations

Find out how to contact our division and where our offices are located.

Learn more about Brigham and Women's Hospital

For over a century, a leader in patient care, medical education and research, with expertise in virtually every specialty of medicine and surgery.

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