Dr. Frank Nathaniel Allan, 77, a senior consultant with the Food and Drug Administration and executive director of the Lahey Clinic for the treatment of diabetes for 17 years, died Tuesday at his home in West Newton, Mass.

Dr. Allan was also a clinical professor of medicine at Georgetown University Medical School during 1966-1972, and an associate clinical professor of medicine at Boston University from 1961-1972.

A member of the executive committee of the International Congress on Internal Medicine, which met in Philadelphia in 1958. Dr. Allan was also the coordinator of the International Congress on Antimicrobial Drugs in Izmir, Turkey, in 1975. He was also a member of the Academy of Medicine here.

Dr. Allan was the winner of the Joslin Medal, an award of the diabetes associations in America.

He was named to head the diabetes section of the Mayo Clinic during 1927-1932 after he was a medical fellow there for two years.

A writer and editor, Dr. Allan was editor of the Diabetes Journal during 1951-1955, and remained an adviser to the magazine until his death. He was on the editorial board of the New England Journal of Medicine during 1952-1966.

He was also the author of numerous medical articles for publications.

Born in Proton, Ontario, in 1899, Dr. Allan was a graduate of the University of Toronto. He received his medical degree in 1924 from the university cum laude and was awarded the Starr Silver Medal.

While a student there, Dr. Allan took part in experiments that led to the first use of insulin as a treatment for diabetes.

After graduation he became a junior staff member in the department of physiology at the university, then interned at Toronto General Hospital before becoming a fellow at the Mayo Clinic in 1925.

In 1932 he was appointed to the Lahey Clinic in Boston to organize a medical department there.

During his work at the clinic, Dr. Allan and Dr. Russell M. Wilder first reported the hyperinsulinism syndrome. The syndrome occurs after the islet cell tumor of the pancreas is exposed to insulin, the doctors found.

A member of the Greater Boston Diabetes Society, Dr. Allan was chairman of the group's executive committee during 1961-1963. He was president of the American Diabetes Society in 1952-1953 and president of the New England society the same year.

Dr. Allan belonged to the American Association of Clinical Investigation; The American Society for Exploratory Pathology; the Endocrine Society, the Massachusetts, American, and International societies for internal medicine; the Canadian Diabetic Association as an honorary member, and Sigma Xi Alpha Omega.

Dr. Allan was governor of the Brae Burn Country Skating Club in Boston from 1965 to 1968.

He is survived by his wife Lillian, of the home; a daughter, Mrs. Christie Piper, of Falls Church; a brother, Charles R. Allan of Ontario, and a sister, Mrs. Maxwell T. MacFarland of Winnepeg, Man., and one grandson.