McMaster University

McMaster University

Nikhil Pai

Dr. Nikhil Pai

Dr. Pai joined the faculty of Medicine at McMaster University in 2014. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Paediatrics, Division of Gastroenterology & Nutrition.

Dr. Pai received his Bachelors of Science from the University of Western Ontario, and Medical Degree from McMaster School of Medicine.  He completed his Paediatrics residency training at the University of Toronto (Hospital for Sick Children), and fellowship in Paediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition at Harvard University (Boston Children’s Hospital).


Clinical and Educational Program Overview

Dr. Pai’s educational contributions are in the fields of paediatrics, clinical gastroenterology, and obesity medicine. He has experience teaching at Harvard Medical School, Harvard College, and McMaster School of Medicine.  Clinically, Dr. Pai supports an active outpatient and inpatient practice through McMaster Children’s Hospital. His clinical work involves general paediatric gastroenterology, hepatology, and endoscopy, and he is the medical lead of the Paediatric Clinical Nutrition Service.

Description of Clinical Specialization

a)         Complex Nutrition Clinic – The Nutrition Clinic assesses and follows newborns, children, and adolescents with congenital and acquired nutritional disorders. These include patients with malabsorption syndromes, nutrient processing disorders, and malnutrition. Our clinic also runs the regional Pediatric Home Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN) Service. We are a multidisciplinary team led by a pediatric gastroenterologist with nutrition specialization, dedicated nurse-practitioner, and dietitians trained in managing complex nutritional disorders. 

b)         Pediatric Nutrition Advisory Committee –Dr. Pai is a co-Chair of McMaster Children’s Hospital’s new Pediatric Nutrition Advisory Committee (PNAC). Along with co-Chair Connie Stuart, RD the PNAC’s mandate is to advance clinical practice, education, research, and policy development for pediatric nutrition across the region. Our work brings together partners across the province and within the hospital, to make McMaster Children’s Hospital a resource for pediatric nutrition excellence regionally, and province-wide.

Research Program

Dr. Pai’s research focuses on the contribution of the intestinal microbiome to immune dysregulation, energy metabolism, and autoimmune disease. He conducted his postdoctoral research work through the Obesity, Metabolism and Nutrition Institute (OMNI) at Massachusetts General Hospital, under the supervision of Drs. Lee Kaplan MD PhD (Department of Gastroenterology, Harvard Medical School) and Peter Turnbaugh PhD (Department of Systems Biology, Harvard University).  He is an Associate Member of the Farncombe Family Digestive Health Research Institute. Dr. Pai has received research support through the Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation, Canadian Obesity Network, and the Hamilton Health Sciences New Investigator Fund. Dr. Pai actively supervises gastroenterology clinical research trainees.

Research Projects

Dr. Pai is involved currently with the following research projects:

Program in Pediatric Intestinal Microbiota Therapeutics 

PediFeTCh Trial (Pediatric Fecal microbial Transplant in ulcerative Colitis) 2017 Apr - 2019 Mar       

Team: Pai N, Lee C, Surette M, Moayyedi P.

[link page] PediCRaFT: Pediatric Crohn's Disease Fecal Transplant Trial (PediCRaFT) i)  2018 Apr - 2020 Sep

Team: Pai N, Lee C, Grzywacz K, Thabane L, Surette M, Moayyedi P, Britz-McKibbin P, Khan W, Popov J, Hill, L, Hartung E. 2018 Jun – 2020 Jun

Patient And Parent Perceptions Of Fecal Microbiota Transplant Among Participants Of McMaster’s PediFetch Trial. 2017 Mar – 2018 Aug

Team: Popov J, Hartung E, Hill L, Pai N

Canadian Patient And Parent Preferences For Fecal Microbiota Transplant In Inflammatory Bowel. 2019 Mar – ongoing

Team: Pai N, MacDonald K, Marshall D, Bruyn J, Haist E, Haist M, Zachos M, Kaplan G, Otley A

Program in Intestinal Microbiome and Pediatric Nutrition

Role Of The Intestinal Microbiome In The Prediction Of The Development Of Celiac Disease. 2018 Jul – 2020 Jun

Team: Vujovic NS, Kaur S, Pai N.

Effect Of Exclusive Enteral Nutrition On The Intestinal Microbiome In Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease. 2015 May – 2016 May

Team: Hart L, Pai N.

Other Research Activities

Stress Ulcer Prophylaxis In Critically Ill Children     2018 Jan – 2019 Dec

Team: Duffett M, Choong K, Cook D, Foster J, Gilfoyle E, Lacroix J, Pai N, Thabane L.

Evaluation Of Hepatitis In Pediatric Patients With Obesity 2018 Sep – ongoing

Team: Al-Harthy F, Brill H, Pai N.

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