Amy Alessi, Ph.D.


Instructor in Investigation
Neurology, Mass General Research Institute
Research Staff
Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital
PhD University of North Carolina 2000
neurodegenerative disease; x-linked dystonia parkinsonism

Dr. Alessi serves as the Program Director for the Collaborative Center for XDP.  In this capacity she manages the Center’s research grant award program, a portfolio that includes 46 projects across 25 international institutions. Dr. Alessi serves manages administrative functions for the Center including reporting to the advisory boards, as well as communications with the CCXDP Consortium via the Center’s website, newsletter and workshops. She served as Science Officer for the XDP Center from 2014-2019.

Dr. Alessi received an undergraduate degree in biology from The College of the Holy Cross and a PhD in neuroscience from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her thesis work, in the laboratory of Dr. Stanley Froehner, focused on Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and the neuromuscular junction. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship Harvard Medical School in the laboratory of Daniel Goodenough PhD studying the role of gap junctions in murine lens development. She returned to disease-focused research as a Research Assistant at the Boston Biomedical Research Institute analyzing the role of inflammation in a mouse model of Becker Muscular Dystrophy. 

X-linked Dystonia Parkinsonism (XDP) is a rare neurodengenerative disease endemic to the Island of Panay in the Philippines. The Collaborative Center for XDP was founded in 2014 to bring together an international team of scientists, physicians and advocates to advance research and expand clinical care. The Center funds basic and clinical research into the pathophysiology of XDP through competitive grant awards, while also supporting humanitarian initiatives in the Philippines.